The Florida State Seminoles took care of business last night in a 23-9 rout of Texas A&M. The Noles had 7 starters with a hit, 16 in all and 8 extra base hits including a season high 4 homeruns. Florida State had multi-run innings in all but 3 and scored in 7 of 9. They took advantage of Aggie pitcher's inability to throw strikes as they walked 12 times and were hit by a pitch 4 times, all in all it was a fun game to watch from an offensive prospective. Once again the pitching was painful to watch, Mike McGee was given an 8 run lead and promptly squandered it throwing 2+ innings where only 23 of his 50 pitches thrown were for strikes. Scott Sitz came in and while he looked good at times he struggled with his command and allowed 10 of the 22 batters he faced to reach base. Mack Waugh was the most impressive last night and with a commanding lead he did what you need to do, throw strikes, pitch to contact and let your defense make plays.
The Aggies refused to throw their best pitchers last night in preparation for tonight's game and luckily enough for the Noles they were able to save their best relievers as well. Inside we will preview the game and look at the pitching probables.
Florida State - RHP, Hunter Scantling vs. Texas A&M - RHP, Michael Wacha
Hunter Scantling has been an effective pitcher off and on throughout the year. As the level of completion is better is when he tends to struggle and tonight he will be tested yet again.
Those are not exactly the numbers you would like to see from your starter when you have a trip to Omaha on the line. While Scantling has been able to minimize his walks recently it has caused the amount of hits he has allowed to increase including 6 homeruns in his last 3 appearances.
The obvious advantage with regards to starting pitching lies with Texas A&M. He has been phenomenal all year and has pitched comparable to Saturday starter Ross Stripling who shut down the Noles.
Unfortunately for the Noles Wacha has been really really good as of late, allowing only 1 run in his last 21 innings pitched. Florida State has a much better offense that any of the 3 teams he has faced recently and have hit pitchers similar to him in the past.
Brian Busch and Daniel Bennett are well rested as they have not thrown all series. Despite struggling in a starting role Busch has been solid as a reliever, in 20 appearances he has thrown 39+ innings with a WHIP of 1.13 and a K:BB ratio of 2.46. Daniel Bennett has be strong all year and really dominant as of late. In his last 3 appearances he has gone 3.2 innings striking out 7 of the 12 batters he has faced and only allowing 2 hits while walking none.
A big reason the game got out of hand last night was that Nick Fleece and Kyle Martin didn't pitch. Both pitchers have been solid all year and can pitch more than one inning if needed. Martin, a submariner, really struggled against Arizona in the regionals but outside of that both relievers have the ability to maintain late leads in the game.
The Aggies have the pitching advantage for tonight's game but as we know the Seminoles are capable of scoring runs on even the best pitching. If they can get to Wacha early and Scantling can pitch a quality 4 innings the Noles should like their chances of winning this game. See everyone back here at 7PM for a live game thread.