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3 up, 3 down: FSU picks up first midweek win of the season over USF

Mat Nelson’s three-run homer the difference in Tuesday’s matchup

NCAA Baseball: College World Series-Arkansas vs Florida State Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports

Florida State started their midweek slate with a complete, 7-3 win over USF. FSU’s offense produced eight hits to go along with 10 free passes. FSU’s hitters continue to draw walks at a ridiculous rate. The pitching staff struck out 12 batters while walking just 3. There was just one defensive miscue on the night for the Seminoles.

Three Up

  • Parker Messick relieved Jack Anderson in the third inning and immediately found himself in a bases loaded situation after one pitch. The freshman showed that he can work in high-leverage situations, as he got a three-pitch K, one-pitch pop up, and one-pitch grounder that would’ve kept the Bulls off the board if it weren’t for an error. Again in the fifth, the freshman found himself in some trouble, but was able to work around it. On the night, Messick worked 2.2 scoreless innings, striking out five, walking one, and giving up 2 hits. Chase Haney was also lights out on the mound, as he worked 2.1 spotless innings. The RS senior allowed just one hit while striking out three. The bullpen as a whole was fantastic on the night, as Jonah Scolaro and Doug Kirkland also posted 1-2-3 innings to close the game out.
  • Carter Smith had himself a day at the plate. After coming into the day with two hits, Smith matched that going 2-3 with 2 RBI and a walk. Smith came up with the ‘Noles first big hit of the day as he drove a 1-out, 2-RBI single write up the middle of the defense. Smith also produced the ‘Noles first hit of the day in his first AB. Smitty also smoked a ball to the RF warning track, but right at the RF for an out.
  • Mat Nelson has had some long, quality at-bats this season but hasn’t seen many results out of it besides walks. Nelson looked in store for another poor night at the plate through the first 5 innings tonight. He struck out in his first three at-bats, including two that were looking and one that stranded three runners. The sophomore turned around his night and the Seminoles night in the sixth inning. Nelson unloaded on a two-strike, hanging breaking ball for his first homer of the season. The three-run bomb opened up a 6-3 FSU lead. Hopefully, the homer gets FSU’s catcher going after an unproductive opening weekend.

Three Down

  • USF extended their lead to 3-0 on a two-out, two-run error from Smith. The senior got his first start of the season at third tonight, and looked shaky on multiple ground balls. He got a routine ground ball at the hot corner, before spiking the throw to second which led to two runners coming around. All of FSU’s option at third base are below average defenders right now. Tyler Martin is likely the best option, but currently has a bum arm. Errors hurt, but two-out errors lose games in the long haul of a season.
  • Early in the game, FSU had too many called third strikes. The Seminoles had four called third strikes by the time the fourth inning rolled around tonight. Strikeouts are bad, called strikeouts are worse. Your chance of getting a hit is zero if you don’t take the bat off your shoulder. Six of FSU’s nine strikeouts came on backwards K’s.
  • Twice, FSU had a man on third with no outs and failed to put the ball in play on Tuesday night. When that opportunity arises, you don’t even need a hit to drive a runner in, so just make a productive out. The last thing you can have in those situations are K’s.