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3 up, 3 down: FSU baseball finishes sweep of Georgia Tech

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Now that's how you start conference play.

The No. 22 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets came into Tallahassee on Friday as the only undefeated team in the country. They're leaving as one of the only winless squads in ACC play, following a three-game sweep at the hands of the No. 11 Florida State Seminoles, who more than doubled up GT by a combined series score of 30-14 following an 8-3 win on Sunday.

3 up

  1. On Friday, the 'Noles blazed out of the gates, whereas Saturday's comeback win saw them take until the fourth inning to collect their first hit. It was back to the quick start on Sunday, as the first four 'Noles reached base en route to Florida State jumping out to a 2-0 first-inning lead. They added another in the third, and when Tech got on the board in the fourth, FSU quickly responded in the bottom half of the inning with a couple to make it 5-1. Three more in the sixth made it 8-1. It had already been a poor weekend for the Jackets, and by not tarrying, the Seminoles let them know that Sunday would be no exception.
  2. The quick start was especially important because it came against a pitcher, in Tech's Jonathan Hughes, who came in missing a lot of bats. He was 3-0 and over 18 innings had posted an ERA of 0.50 (one earned run). Instead of letting him settle down and get into a rhythm, the 'Noles jumped on him immediately. He took the loss after lasting just 3.2 innings and allowing five earned runs on six hits while walking three and hitting two batters.
  3. On the bump for Florida State, freshman hurler Cole Sands had a nice weekend rebound. The last time we saw him on Sunday was in last week's loss to St. John's, when he took the L after allowing four hits and a pair of earned runs over just 1.2 innings of work. His final line today: 5.1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 5 K.

3 down

  1. FSU began its first at bat with a walk and three consecutive singles that produced the aforementioned early lead. Then, with two on, nobody out, and Gage West (hitting .400) coming to the plate, Florida State ordered up the sac bunt. Advanced metrics deride the use of the bunt pretty much any time, but when you've got a freshman pitcher on the ropes, why give him an out? He's yet to retire a batter-- make him prove he can do so. Moreover, it's early. Playing for one run late in the game, when there are only so many outs left and the situation is apparent is one thing; doing so at the beginning makes little sense, as it could be a 3-2 game, or it could wind up 11-10. Point being, the value of a single run varies from game to game.
  2. Although he chipped in a fantastic diving catch in right field, the 'Noles would love to get a bit more from Darren Miller at the dish. He got off to a nice start with his first home run on Friday night, but today he was the only Seminole not to get a base hit, going 0-4 with a pair of strikeouts. His 13 strikeouts are tied for the team high, and at present he's the only regular starter hitting below .250, at .235.
  3. Twice this weekend the FSU bats came up just two runs short of securing free Chick-fil-A for the home crowd. I can't believe I'm carping about a lack of free Ckick-Fil-A after the Peach Bowl, but here we are-- call it a sign of an otherwise extremely successful ACC home stand.

The win has the 'Noles at 13-3 and 3-0 in conference play. Next up for FSU is a date with the top team in the country, the Florida Gators, in Gainesville. The grudge match will take place on Tuesday at 7 pm.