HOUSTON – Junior right-hander Dillon Newman was simply proficient in a 9-0 Baylor win over California to open up the 2013 Astros Foundation College Classic at Minute Maid Park on Friday afternoon. Bears (4-5) starter Newman posted career highs of seven innings pitched and eight strikeouts while holding California (4-5) to just three hits and no free passes in a shutout performance.
The Bears grabbed a run in the top of the first inning on a one-out RBI single by Cal Towey, and it was all Newman from there. Commanding a healthy mix of all five pitches, Newman retired the first batter of every inning and threw strike one to 17 of the 24 batters he faced as he painted 70 strikes in 97 pitches.
"The thing [Dillon] has been consistent with is throwing strikes," said Baylor Head Coach Steve Smith. "I don't think he's walked a guy to this point, which on our staff, makes him pretty special. Today was good, today was sharp. He had secondary stuff to go on with fastball command. I thought he pitched well and we played well behind him. It was just that kind of game."
The only inning in which he experienced any sniff of trouble was in the fourth after Chris Paul roped a two-out double. Newman was unfazed, though, striking out Max Dutto to preserve a 2-0 lead following a fourth-inning RBI single by Steve DalPorto that scored Mitch Price after a leadoff triple.
Newman also gave up two-out singles in the second and fifth, but wasted no time retiring the next hitter on both occasions. Picking up his second win (2-0) in as many starts, he has thrown 12 shutout innings since taking a no-decision in his first start of the season at UC Irvine.
After Towey tripled home a run in the fifth and scored on a Price RBI single, Baylor opened up the game in the sixth. With the bases loaded, a wild pitch and balk by reliever Chris Muse-Fisher scored two runs. Two walks later, Adam Toth drew an RBI bases-loaded walk. Following a pitching change, DalPorto delivered a crushing blow with a two-out, two-run single to left off Keaton Siomkin.
"We got some balls to the backstop and a couple big hits," Smith said. "The triples helped, they played their infield in a couple times and we put it past them. When you roll the dice sometimes like that you can turn some big innings."
The Baylor bullpen was just as lights out as Newman to finish the game. First, Trae Davis worked a flawless eighth to extend his scoreless appearance streak to eight over a nine-inning stretch – he's allowed just seven base runners and struck out six in the streak. Then, Miles Landry threw a scoreless ninth, allowing just a walk.
Six Baylor batters tallied two-hit games: Lawton Langford, Nathan Orf, Towey, Price, DalPorto and Brett Doe. DalPorto drove in a team-best three runs, while Langford scored a team-high three runs.
California starter Justin Jones (0-1) was tagged with the loss after allowing two runs on seven hits and three walks with one strikeout in four innings.
With its first back-to-back wins of the season, Baylor continues its weekend at the College Classic tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. CT against Houston before wrapping up on Sunday against No. 12 Rice at 6 p.m.