WACO, Texas – Baylor took advantage of an ugly first inning of defense by Louisiana Tech for a 4-2 win at Baylor Ballpark on Tuesday night. The Bears' (6-6) three runs in the first held up for their sixth straight win over the Bulldogs
(3-9) and put BU at .500 for the first time in the 2013 campaign.
Four Bulldog errors in the bottom of the first
helped the Bears plate three important runs. With Logan Brown on first
base after a leadoff walk, Nathan Orf was the beneficiary of two dropped
foul balls, and he made it hurt by roping a
single to left. As LA Tech's Kody Neel tried to field Orf's ball on
one hop, it zoomed past his glove and allowed Brown to score and Orf to
Then, with Cal Towey up, a wild pitch by Ben
Carlisle scored Orf. After Towey took one for the team, Duncan Wendel
singled on a liner to center that Colby Johnson had trouble fielding.
The error enabled both runners to take an extra base.
Taking advantage of the scoring chance, Jake Miller brought Towey home
on a sacrifice fly for what proved to be the game-winning run.
The Bulldogs answered back in the third with two
runs on a two-out double by Taylor Terrasas, but BU starter Sean Spicer
allowed nothing else as he induced a groundout to escape. The Baylor
bullpen then backed up Spicer to seal the win
with 4.1 innings of hitless and scoreless relief.
Josh Michalec was first out of the pen and got
Terrasas swinging to leave two on base in the fifth. After a walk by
Michalec to start the seventh, Bobby McCormack came in. The lefty
walked his first batter but got a fly out before giving
way to Ryan Smith. BU's main back end guy inherited two runners and
left both on base after a fly out and swinging strikeout on Terrasas.
"I thought Sean, for his second career start and as
much as he struggled, he got us through five innings," said BU Head
Coach Steve Smith. "Michalec came in and got a big out when he came
in and then was able to get a few more outs behind
it. I think McCormick, at the point of the game I used him was probably
not the best time, but he was my one lefty that was up. They forced
his hand a bit; he got the one out and then had a couple walks in
there. I thought Ryan looked pretty sharp. I thought
he had the best stuff I've seen him have."
Smith finished the game on cruise control to pick
up his third save in a 2.2-inning, two-strikeout perfect performance.
He nailed down the first career win for Michalec (1-1), who had two
strikeouts in 1.1 innings. Spicer took a no-decision
after surrendering two runs on five hits and three walks with two
strikeouts in 4.2 frames.
Carlisle (0-1) took the loss for the Bulldogs after
allowing four runs (two earned) on three hits and two walks with two
strikeouts in 4.1 innings.
Orf paced the way for the BU offense with two hits
and a run scored in four at-bats. Towey drove in Baylor's fourth run of
the game on a groundout in the fifth to extend his career-high streak
of games with an RBI to eight.
"Cal's given us competitive at-bats," Smith said.
"He puts a little fear in [the opponent]. The left side of the infield
is really solid. That's the part of the game that goes unnoticed a lot.
You have to catch it and throw it to not beat
yourself. And I think that's how we won this game. We caught the ball
and we didn't beat ourselves."
The Bears and Bulldogs meet again tomorrow at 4 p.m. CT as BU LHP Sterling Wynn (0-0, 5.79 ERA) matches up against RHP Omar Ugarte (1-1, 6.48 ERA).
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