Meant to get this up a bit earlier, but sometimes real life intervenes….
Since live blogging/game threads for football and basketball seem to be somewhat popular, I figured why not give it a try with baseball. We’ll try to use this thread for the weekend series and see how it goes. Periodic updates, as well as links to weekend coverage of the games, will be added to the post as time (and timing) permits. If it proves to be popular/well-received, maybe we can make it a regular thing…at least for a few more weeks. Besides, we gotta do something to fill the time until August 31st, right?
Wolfpack Baseball starts a 3 game series at home tonite against the Duke Blue Devils. Anticipated pitching matchups (courtesy of CollegeBaseballDaily.com) are as follows:
Duke at #25 NC State
Friday, 6:30 p.m.
Anthony Tzamtzis, RHP (3.06 ERA, 4-3) vs. Marcus Stroman, RHP (2.22, 4-3)
Saturday, 6:30 p.m.
Carlos Rodon, LHP (1.23, 7-0) vs. Trent Swart, LHP (4.35, 3-6)
Sunday, 6:30 p.m.
Logan Jernigan, RHP (4.93, 4-1) vs. Robert Huber, RHP (4.47, 4-4)
Duke currently has the worst record of any ACC team (16-26/7-14), and it seems folks are expecting a Wolfpack sweep because of this. The problem with this is Marcus Stroman, Duke’s ace. If you aren’t familiar with him, you can check him out here and here. Suffice to say, if we can steal a win tonite we should count ourselves fortunate.
The Pack’s freshman LHP Carlos Rodon has been named to College Baseball Hall of Fame’s Pitcher of the Year Watch List. Duke’s Stroman also made the list, as did Wake’s Brian Holmes and 3 pitcher’s from some other RTP institution. No other ACC team had a pitcher make the list, but ECU had two (Kevin Brandt, Tyler Joyner).
As already mentioned, I meant to get this up earlier…
After giving up 1 in the 1st and 2 in the 2nd, Duke’s Stroman seems to have settled down.
Currently the Pack is enjoying a 3-0 lead in the top of the 5th. Tzamtzis has been awesome thus far giving up only two hits, but is currently facing a 1st and 2nd situation. with 2 down. Groundout, third to first to end Duke’s half of the 5th inning, then the Pack goes down in order in the bottom of the 5th.
6th inning – Tzamtzis continuing to cruise, sits Duke down in order. Still a 2 hitter thru 6, with 7 k’s. The Pack’s Ciencin leads off the bottom of the 6th with a single, but gets stranded there as the next three batters go down in order.
7th inning – Duke goes scoreless; Pack’s Fincher leads off with triple, scores on Diaz infield hit. 4-0 Pack at the end of 7 complete.
8th inning – After giving up leadoff walk, Tzamtzis retires next two batters. With two down, Tzamtzis yields to Ogburn, who comes on in relief and gets Duke’s cleanup hitter to ground out, third to first; Ryan Matthews leads off with a single for the Pack, advances to third on two consecutive fielder’s choice, but is stranded at third when Brett Austin goes down swinging to end the inning. Going to the 9th, Duke down to their last 3 outs.
9th inning – Ogburn retires Duke in order, Pack takes game one, 4-0.
Game One thoughts and media coverage – Huge, huge win. Not only did the Pack steal a Friday win from Duke’s ace Marcus Stroman, Tzamtzis showed exactly why State should NOT fiddle with the weekend rotation. With an ERA that should now be hovering close to 2.0, Tzamtzis and Rodon make up a very potent Friday/Saturday 1-2 punch.
GoPack.com – Tzamtzis Mows Down Career-High Nine in Pack Win
RALEIGH, N.C. – Anthony Tzamtzis struck out a career-high nine batters and Jake Fincher hit a pair of triples to propel No. 19 NC State to a 4-0, series-opening win over Duke Friday at Doak Field at Dail Park.
Tzamtzis (5-3) went a career-long 7 2/3 innings in only his fifth start of the year, holding Duke (16-27, 7-15 ACC) to two hits and striking out nine Blue Devils to top his previous best of eight, set in his first appearance this season against Wright State. The redshirt sophomore walked five batters in the shutout effort, and did not let a runner past second base on the evening. Ethan Ogburn pitched the final 1 1/3, striking out two without allowing a hit.
Bill Hass on the ACC (theACC.com) – Freshman Pitcher Carlos Rodon Makes Seamless Transition
GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) – Most freshman pitchers require at least a little while to adjust from high school to college baseball, but Carlos Rodon of NC State has made the transition look seamless.
The freshman left-hander is making a big impression on the ACC baseball scene, rolling to a 7-0 record with a 1.23 ERA and 85 strikeouts in 73 1/3 innings.
In ACC games, he’s 5-0 with a 1.39 ERA and 60 strikeouts in 53 1/3 innings. His performance has helped the Wolfpack to an overall record of 26-12 and an ACC mark of 13-8, good for second place in the Atlantic Division.
Game Two – Saturday
1st inning – Rodon with a bit of a shaky start, gives up two hits in the inning but works his way out of a 1st and 3rd, one out jam; Trea Turner draws a walk to leadoff for the Pack then advances to 2nd on a balk and to third on Diaz single, scores on Canela single…Diaz scores on Ciencin sac fly…Pack leads 2-0 after one.
2nd inning – Rodon strikes out two in the inning, appears to be settling in nicely now; Pack’s Tarran Senay jacks a 3-2 offering over the right field fence…3-0 Pack leads.
3rd inning – Duke puts up another goose egg in the 3rd against Rodon despite hit batsman, Piwnica-Worms (possibly the best name in ACC Baseball); Diaz leads off the Pack half of the 3rd with a single to center, steals 2nd and advances to 3rd on Mathews sac fly….but is ultimately stranded at 3rd. Still 3-0, Pack.
4th inning – Duke goes down in order. The line on Rodon thru four is 0 runs on 2 hits, with 7 K’s and 0 BB; Austin singles with one out, scores on Senay’s double. Senay advances to 3rd on the throw, then is thrown out trying to steal home. 4-0 Pack at the end of four.
5th inning – Rodon needs only 7 pitches to sit Duke down in order in the top half of the 5th; Trea Turner leads off the bottom of the 5th by parking the first pitch over the left field fence, then Diaz doubles and advances to 3rd on Canela single. After Mathews pops up to the catcher, Duke makes a pitching change….Ohanian in to relieve Swart, gets Ciencin to ground into an inning ending double play, 6-4-3. Pack picks up one more run and now leads 5-0, but miss out on a golden opportunity to really bust this one open.
6th inning – A lead off walk, a triple and a HR translates into a 3 run inning for Duke; Senay and Ratledge both draw two out walks for the Pack in the bottom half, but both are stranded when Turner goes down looking. Pack leads 5-3 at the end of six.
7th inning – Rodon retires the side in order, including 2 more K’s (10 for the game thus far); Diaz leads off the Pack half of the 7th with a single thru the middle, but is caught trying to steal 2nd…Canela doubles, then scores on a double by Mathews…Duke’s Istler on in relief of Ohanian…Ciencin doubles, scoring Mathews…Fincher’s single scores Ciencin. Pack picks up 3, leads 8-3 after seven.
8th inning – Duke goes scoreless in the 8th despite a lead off double; Piscotty on to pitch for Duke in the bottom half, Diaz doubles with one out but gets stranded at 2nd. Pack up 8-3, Duke down to their last 3 outs.
9th inning – Duke goes in order in the top of the 9th. Pack wins, 8-3. Rodon goes the distance giving up 3 runs on 5 hits. He struck out 12, walked only one, and hit a batter.
Game Two thoughts and media coverage – Solid and steady effort from Rodon (aside from a couple of speedbumps) to move to 8-0 on the year. Offensively a nice blend of power, timely hitting and speed on the basepaths. Chance at the sweep tomorrow.
RALEIGH, N.C. – Carlos Rodon went the distance for the second time this season, tying a career-high with 12 strikeouts, as No. 19 NC State took its second in as many days from Duke, 8-3, Saturday night at Doak Field at Dail Park.
Rodon (8-0) appeared dominant once again, despite giving up the most runs he has allowed all season, three earned on five hits and one walk. The only blemish in the freshman’s outing came with Duke’s three-run sixth to cut the Wolfpack lead to 5-3, sparked by a two-run homer from Jordan Betts, only the second ever surrendered by Rodon.
Chris Diaz notched a career-high at the plate, going 5-for-5 for the first time in his three years at State, with two doubles, a run, and a stolen base. Diaz improves to 20-for-31(.645) over his last seven games with nine doubles, 13 RBIs, and 10 runs.
Game Three – Sunday
1st inning – Shaky start for Jernigan…two walks (including the leadoff hitter), two hits and a passed ball gives Duke 2 runs in their opening frame, NC State coming to bat; Trea Turner draws a leadoff walk, makes his way to 3rd on a throwing error, and Chris Diaz then walks. Canela sac fly scores Turner, advances Diaz to 2nd…Mathews singles, moving Diaz to 3rd….Ciencin sac fly scores Diaz….Pack gets the 2 runs back, tied 2-2 after one.
2nd inning – Ogburn on in relief of Jernigan to begin the 2nd…Makes me wonder if there’s something wrong with Jernigan (injury?). Ogburn sits Duke down 1-2-3 in the top half of the 2nd; Pack goes in order in their half. Still Duke 2, State 2 at the end of two.
3rd inning – Duke retired in order in top 3rd; Danny Canela launches a 2 out solo shot, then Mathews reaches on an infield single, advances to 2nd on a passed ball, and to 3rd on a throwing error, but is stranded at 3rd when Ciencin pops up to the SS to end the inning. Pack picks up one, takes the lead 3-2 at the end of three.
4th inning – Duke’s Piwnica-Worms (sounds like a parasite you’d get if you ate uncooked meat in a third world country) homers with one out to tie the game at 3; Pack retired in order. 3-3 after four.
5th inning – A one out double by Duke’s Istler, advances to 3rd on a fielder’s choice, then scores on a two out single…after yielding a free pass to Piwnica-Worms, State’s Ogburn is relieved by RHP Vance Williams, who gets Duke’s Lumpa to fly out to end the top half of the 5th, but not before Duke retakes the lead 4-3; Wolfpack goes quietly in the bottom 5th, Duke still leads 4-3.
6th inning – Two consecutive singles for Duke to start the 6th, both advance on a sac bunt, both score on a two out double by Duke’s Istler…Istler scores on a double by Betts, Duke picks up three more for the inning, now leads 7-3; Canela leads off the bottom half of the 6th with a solo shot, Mathews then reaches on an infield single and advances to second on a wild pitch…Ciencin moves him over to third on a groundout, and Austin’s two out double scores him. After a walk by Fincher, Ratledge doubles to score Austin and move Fincher to third, chasing Duke’s Huber from the mound….Haviland on in relief….Fincher scores on a passed ball. Pack picks up four in the inning to erase Duke’s lead. 7-7 at the end of six.
7th inning – Williams sits Duke down in order; Ciencin gets a two out single, then advances to 2nd on a wild pitch, but gets stranded at 2nd. Game still tied, 7-7 after seven.
8th inning – Duke goes scoreless in the top of the 8th; Austin leads off with a single for the Pack, then steals 2nd and gets to 3rd on a wild pitch…scores on a one out Ratledge double….Pack gets one, but that’s all it needs if it can sit Duke down three more times. Heart of the order due up for Duke in the 9th (Betts, Rosenfeld and….Piwnica-Worms…sorry, had to grab the chance to get that name in here one last time).
9th inning – Williams sits them down in order to get the win.
Pack wins a mudder, 8-7, to sweep the Blue Devils and get to 30 wins on the season. Not the prettiest game in the world from a pitcher’s perspective, but could have been worse.