The Seminoles scored 9 runs and lost, it was a perfect storm of sloppy baseball by both teams and the Seminoles came up just a little short. What some fans fail to grasp though is that this three game series which means that the Noles can still win the next two games and advance. The defense committed 3 errors that showed up in the box score and had another 3 plays that could have been made which resulted in 3 extra runs allowed. The Noles were the beneficiary of poor defense from the Hoosiers as well so I believe its safe to say we won't see frequency of mistakes in subsequent games.
Starting pitcher Luke Weaver wasn't as sharp as he has been in recent weeks but he still pitched well, his defense really let him down by extending innings. The bullpen was up and down too, the usual shut down pitchers couldn't find the strikezone while the potential liability pitchers were shutdown and kept the Noles within comeback distance. The offense was once again great, yes they left a lot of runners on base but they also scored 9 runs, walked 8 times and had only 4 strikeouts.
The Seminoles are not in an optimal position to advance to the College World Series but they still match up very well with Indiana and are completely capable of winning the next two games.
Scott Sitz has been in this position before, facing elimination in last year's College World Series he went out and threw 6.2 innings scattered 5 hits, walked 1 and struck out 8 UCLA hitters. The senior who was just drafted by the Tigers has been solid all season, limiting walks and striking out over 7 hitters per 9 innings pitched. In his last outing he completely shut down Savannah State in regionals, pitching 7.1 innings allow zero runs, walking none and left with 8 strikeouts.
The Hoosiers will counter with Aaron Slegers who was drafted in the 5th round by the Minnesota Twins. The 6'10" red-shirt sophomore has been effective this season despite not pitching like you might expect. His large frame makes you think of Randy Johnson but with a pedestrian strikeout rate and fastball that sits in the low 90s he is not going to overpower any Florida State hitters. He does however limit his walks and relies on his defense to pick him which can hopefully be exploited because the Hoosiers defense is not very good. In his last outing Slegers struggled with 4 seed Valparaiso as he struck out 2, walked 1 and allowed 6 hits over only 4 innings.
The bullpen yesterday was frustrating to say the least, he didn't pitch poorly but Gage Smith faced just two batters, both reached and his outing was over. He threw 2 pitches yesterday and is absolutely available today. Billy Strode, Peter Miller and Bryant Holtman threw 25, 23 and 26 pitches respectively, Strode was uncharacteristically wild and couldn't find the zone. Peter Miller and Bryant Holtman did a good job of keeping the deficit manageable and pitching quality innings.
The Indiana bullpen threw 144 pitches over 6 innings yesterday while allowing 7 runs which was enough to sneak out a win. Mike Martin brought up Houston Street who owned Florida State over a decade ago by pitching 150 plus pitches on back to back days, the Hoosiers do not have any pitchers like that so expecting the same situation to repeat itself is unrealistic. The work horse for this relief staff is Scott Effross who threw 63 pitches over 2.2 innings and was not effective at all, seeing him again today would be good for FSU but probably unlikely. Game 3 potential starting pitchers were also in action yesterday, Kyle Hart spent a couple innings in the bullpen but didn't make it into the game while Coursen-Carr closed things out despite not pitching all that sharply. Florida State was also able to extend Indiana's closer to 32 pitches and it was obvious he was struggling at the end of his outing.
Here are today's lineups.
Florida State had 12 hits, 8 walks and only 4 strikeouts yesterday which led to 9 runs scored. This was the 22nd time this season the Noles had scored at least 9 runs this season and this was the first time in which they had lost. DJ Stewart continued to show why he is the teams best hitter by going 2 for 5 with a walk. Gio Alfonzo went 3 for 4 with a walk and has become a huge contributor at the bottom of the order in the past few weeks.
Kyle Schwarber had quite an impact on the game yesterday going 2-4 with 2 runs, 4 RBI, a walk and towering homerun. Scott Donley and Michael Basil also had multi-hit games yesterday, as a team though this lineup managed only 4 walks to 7 strikeouts. A key factor was that 4 of their 11 hits went for extra bases while 11 of the 12 hits for Florida State were singles.
DEFENSE AND BASERUNNING
Not much to say here, both teams have bad defenses and both of those bad defenses were on full display yesterday. The Hoosiers were 4-5 in stolen bases yesterday, some of those were on the pitching staff and some were on McGee, in the postgame it didn't sound like the Indiana head coach is going to stop running anytime soon. Florida State was not all that aggressive on the basepaths and there was no need to be.
SCHEDULE AND TICKETS
Like last week Florida State has set up a one stop shop for all your information needs but here is some general information.
Saturday, June 8, 2013
Game 1: Indiana vs. Florida State - 12:00 p.m. (ESPNU)
Sunday, June 9, 2013
Game 2: Florida State vs. Indiana - 1:00 p.m. (ESPNU)
Monday, June 10, 2013
Game 3: Florida State vs. Indiana (if necessary) - 1:00 p.m. (ESPN2)
All games will be televised by ESPN and will feature the broadcast crew of Doug Glanville and Mike Morgan. The weather may play a factor today, rain rolled through this morning and it remains overcast right now with showers expected to return this afternoon.
I do believe that Florida State is going to win this series, they have the pitching match ups over the next two games and still have a better offense. Yesterday was one of the worst games they have played all season and they still had an excellent opportunity to win the game in the bottom of the 9th inning.
See everyone back here at 1PM.