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Three up, three down: FSU baseball falls to Clemson to even series

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Cabell’s grand slam, three hits not enough on Saturday.

FSU sports information/Ken Lanese

No. 17 Florida State baseball (27-19, 18-14 ACC) fell to Clemson (24-22, 16-16 ACC) in game two by a score of 9-5 to even the series. The ‘Noles held a two-run lead into the sixth, but played sloppy the rest of the way. Mike Martin Jr. was ejected for the second time this season in the eighth inning. At the plate, Florida State produced nine hits and seven free passes, but stranded 10 men on base. On the mound, the ‘Noles allowed ten hits and seven free passes. The ‘Noles only made one error, their first of the series, but it was a crucial one. Today’s loss sets up a rubber match at 1:00 PM tomorrow. Both teams starters are TBA.

Three up

  • Elijah Cabell has turned himself into a constant threat at the plate. The outfielder’s ten-game hit streak was snapped yesterday, but he bounced back in a big way in game two. In the third inning, Cabell chopped a single up the middle for the Seminoles’ second hit. Two innings later, the redshirt sophomore gave the ‘Noles they had been looking for against Keyshawn Askew. After falling behind 1-2, Cabell got all of a 1-2 slider and deposited it over the center field wall for a grand slam. The grand slam was his first of the season and fourth of the year. The two-out hit was also Cabell’s 14th home run of the season and raised his RBI total to 36. In his last at-bat, Cabell ripped a single through the left-side to tie a career-high with three hits.
  • Logan Lacey was the conductor of the Seminoles’ offense on Friday night with two doubles and three RBI. Lacey got the train rolling again on Sunday. Lacey got the Seminoles on the board with a solo homer over the left-center field wall. The third baseman took advantage of a hanging slider for his fifth homer of the season.

In the fifth inning, Lacey pulled his hands inside to deposit a two-strike fastball into left field for a single. He scored his second run on Cabell’s grand slam. The next inning, Lacey worked a 10-pitch walk with two outs to load the bases for Matheu Nelson. Lacey has been a thorn in the side of the Tigers through two games this weekend.

  • Brandon Walker got some work in a cleanup role in the ninth inning. Walker showed off his premium stuff and pounded the zone for an efficient 1-2-3 inning. He retired the first batter on a first-pitch fly out. He followed it with a four-pitch strikeout. Walker induced a first-pitch grounder to second to end a six-pitch inning. The RHP sat 96-97 MPH with his fastball and flashed an 82-83 MPH hammer curveball.

Three down

  • Last week, Conor Grady didn’t allow a run in five innings to top-10 Notre Dame. This week, Grady ran into quick trouble against the Tigers. Sam Hall led off the game with a two-strike single into center field. Kier Meredith followed with a single of his own into right field. James Parker drove both runners in with a double down the third base line to make it a two-run deficit just three batters in. Bryar Hawkins extended the lead to three with the Tigers’ fourth hit of the inning on a single through the left side with the infield pulled in. The three earned runs in the first inning was the first time an FSU weekend starter allowed more than two ER in eight starts. Grady settled down in the next inning with a 1-2-3 frame and a strikeout. After the first, the right-hander allowed just two hits and a walk. The redshirt junior did a veteran job of keeping the Seminoles in the game until they could get the bats going. Grady posted a final line of 5.1 IP, 6 H, 1 BB, 7 K’s, 5 R, 4 ER, and 103 pitches.
  • Grady cruised from the second to fifth inning. It wasn’t until the sixth that he ran into more trouble and his bullpen didn’t help him. After Cabell’s grand slam, the ‘Noles were looking for a crucial shutdown inning. Hawkins lined his second hit through the left side for a one-out single. Grady’s day ended on his first walk. Hunter Perdue entered the game and walked the first batter he faced. The Tigers cut the lead on half as a ball in the dirt got past Matheu Nelson. After a strikeout for out #2, the Tigers tied the game on a wild pitch. Perdue’s day ended after he hit Nelson in the chest with a 99 MPH fastball on a cross up. Jonah Scolaro entered the game and walked his first batter before inducing a fly out in a 3-0 count to end the inning.
  • The top seven brought more struggles for the FSU pen. The ‘Noles turned to Wyatt Crowell to start the inning. Crowell entered the game on a 10.1 scoreless innings streak. After three batters, that came to an end. Crowell hit Meredith with his first pitch. Parker lined his next pitch into right for a single to put runners on the corners with no outs. Crowell induced a chopper up the middle, but Nander De Sedas whiffed on a pick attempt as the ball bounced into CF. Instead of having no runners on and up one with two outs after a 6-3 DP, the Tigers still had runners on the corners with one out and the lead now in their hands. Crowell’s day ended after his second hit-by-pitch loaded the bases with no outs. Tyler Ahearn produced a pop up and a strikeout, but the Tigers extended their lead to three with a single and a walk. Davis Hare ended the inning with a slow roller to second to strand three. Of Clemson’s three runs in the inning, just one was earned, and that run reached base on a hit-by-pitch. It took five relievers to record the first five outs out of the pen.