Three Games On Tap For Monday…Hopefully!
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10 am – FINAL: Clemson 6, #1 Arizona St. 3
3:30 pm – FINAL: Florida St. 8, Florida 5 (Gators Eliminated)
8 pm – FINAL: UCLA 6, TCU 3
By Collegebaseball360.com Editor Sean Stires
8:20 am – Well, the Arizona State vs. Clemson game that was supposed to have been played last night is supposed to start in about an hour and a half. It’s not looking too promising right now though, because it’s been pouring down rain all morning. I woke-up at around 3:45 this morning and heard it coming down pretty good then. It stopped for a short time, but it’s been raining pretty steadily for a few hours now. The local weather shows a front that looks like it could pass within the next couple hours.
Two more games are also scheduled for later today. Florida State vs. Florida in the afternoon elimination game and TCU vs. UCLA tonight. It’s likely to be a touch and go day. Stay tuned…
10:22 am - The sun is shining and Arizona State vs. Clemson is underway. It’s the first morning game at the CWS since June 10, 2000 when USC played Florida State. This morning’s game is also a rematch of last year’s Tempe Super Regional won by the Sun Devils.
Clemson head coach Jack Leggett was fired-up after the home plate meeting with ASU’s Tim Esmay and the umpires. Leggett raced away from the plate and was immediately engulfed in a near dog pile by his team before they batted in the top of the first inning.
- ASU starter Seth Blair (12-1) has already walked a season-high four batters in his first two innings on the mound. Blair is the Pac 10 Pitcher of the Year. He ended his day with five free passes.
- Blair topped the 100 pitch mark with two on and no outs in the top of the 5th inning. He left after 4 1/3 innings with runners at the corners in the top of the 5th. He threw 110 pitches and gave-up five earned runs. It was his second shortest start of the season, after a 3.0 inning start vs BYU on May 10.
- It’s easy to see why ASU’s Rauol Torrez wears the “C” (for captain) on his
chest. Torrez lined what could have easily been just a single to left field in the third inning, but he didn’t settle for one base. Torrez never broke stride and made it into second ahead of the throw from Jeff Schaus. He then took third on a wild pitch by Casey Harman and scored on a Sac Fly to right by Austin Barnes. His slide home just beat the throw by Kyle Parker.
- As if the heads-up base running weren’t enough, Torrez made a Brooks Robinson-esque play at third in the top of the next inning. Spencer Kieboom hit a hot shot just inside the line, which carried Torrez into foul territory. He did a piroutett and fired a strike across the diamond to get the out.
- Clemson came into the series with 95 errors this season, which ranks in the bottom one-third of the 301 Division One college teams in the country. However, the Tigers also came into the CWS with 75 double plays turned, which is good for 3rd nationally.
- The Tigers caught a break in the top of the 5th with ASU LF Drew Maggi lost a fly ball off the bat of Richie Shaffer in a high sky. Maggi froze with his hands up in the air to both sides…the ball landed some 30 feet away from him.
- The biggest “BOO” of the CWS so far came from the smallest crowd to date when a ball girl dropped a foul ball that caromed off the net behind the plate. Some traditions never change…
- The announced attendance for the morning game was 14,198 for a four game total of 83,953.
- All 14 of Clemson’s hits in its 6-3 win over ASU were singles.
- The Florida vs. Florida State match-up in the 3:30 pm elimination game was the 5th meeting in the 5th different city between the two rivals this season. Florida State won previous encounters in Tampa, Jacksonville and Tallahassee, while Florida beat the Seminoles in Gainesville.
- Florida State leadoff man Tyler Holt started the bottom of the first inning with a home run high off the batter’s eye in center field. Holt was starting in his 198th consecutive game.
- Mike McGee launched a 3-run shot in the third inning. McGee is also FSU’s closer and is a finalist for the John Olerud Award given to the two-way player of the year. He came into a bases loaded situation with the tying run at first base in the 9th inning. The game ended on a line drive to shortstop Stephen Cardullo who then stepped on second to end the game. McGee now has 13 saves and 16 HR this season.
- Cardullo had an even more impressive blast when he sent one over the batter’s eye and out of the stadium to straight away centerfield…where the distance is 408.
- Clemson and Florida State are trying to end a 55-year championship drought for the ACC. The only Atlantic Coast Conference team to win the College World Series was Wake Forest in 1955.
- Does anyone else always make an audible “Oooo” every time they see a batter get hit by a pitch?
- Florida called on #3 starter Brian Johnson after fellow freshman and #2 starter Randall Hudson gave-up four runs in 2 2/3 IP. Johnson didn’t fair much better though. He surrendered two runs on six hits in 3 1/3 innings in just his second relief appearance of the season. The last hit Johnson gave-up was Cardullo’s HR.
- It worked! 99.9 % of the time the old “fake to third throw to first” never works, but it did today. FSU pitcher Daniel Bennett picked-off Florida’s Tyler Thompson at first base when he executed the move to end the top of the 8th inning.
- The announced crowd for the Florida-Florida State game was 19,841 for a five game total of 103,794 and an average of 20,759.
- UCLA pitcher Trevor Bauer said after Saturday’s start that he doesn’t like big baseball caps that make him look “like a conductor”. That’s why he has worn the same hat for the last two years.
- Every win UCLA gets during the CWS adds to its school record season total.
- Beach balls in the outfield bleachers are the norm here, but there was a barrage of beach balls on the warning track in left field just before the start of the sixth inning.
- The most electric moment of the CWS so far was Taylor Featherston’s 2-out, 3-run triple in the top of the 7th inning. The TCU shortstop laced a Gerrit Cole pitch over Beau Amaral in left centerfield to get the Horned Frogs on the board. TCU had managed just one hit throught the first six innings, but had four hits in the inning to cut their deficit to 5-3.
- The TCU-UCLA game drew a crowd of 23,345 to make it a six game total of 127,139…still about 10 K behind last year’s pace. Does no LSU and no Texas really affect the draw that much? So much for Rosenblatt nostalgia…
- Gerrit Cole (11-3) had 13 strikeouts to lead UCLA to its 6-3 win over TCU. He had the one hiccup when he gave-up the bases loaded triple to Taylor Featherston in the 7th, but he came back in the 8th and had the last two of his punchouts. Cole and TCU’s Matt Purke have lived-up to their billing. They have been the most impressive individuals of the CWS so far.
- With its win UCLA now waits until Friday to play either Florida State or TCU again. Those two play an elimination game Wednesday night.
UCLA/TCU Postgame Video Interviews