Ole Miss baseball cruised to a 10-3 win over Wright State on Friday, so we all just figured we'd get to kick back and watch an easy weekend sweep. Wrong. The Raiders (yea, I had to look that up) stole the first leg of a weather-induced Sunday double header with a Sportscenter Top-10 play in the field, then came up juuuust short of sending the rubber game to extras.
Errol Robinson's absurd game-ending double play (see below) sealed a 3-2 Game 3 win and a surprisingly close series. Inches separated a brow-wiping W and an embarrassing non-con series loss -- though if we're being fair, mere inches also separated the Rebs from a spectacular win in Game 2. A brilliant diving catch from a Wright State fielder (also below) kept Ole Miss from plating the tying run in the bottom of the ninth and evened the series with a 3-1 Raiders win. The Rebs led that game 1-0 as late as the seventh, but a three-run homer off of Scott Weathersby put Wright State in the lead for good.
Just like last week, the series win is pretty meh. You'd like to be picking up sweeps early on while you can, but you also can't be too upset about series wins. What you can be mad about is this cold-as-fuck weather that keeps getting in the way of our baseball. WTF, Al Gore? I thought global warming was a thing.
Friday: Ole Miss 10, Wright State 3
Sunday Game 1: Wright State 3, Ole Miss 1
Sunday Game 2: Ole Miss 3, Wright State 2
1. Game 2 was a heartbreaker...
Trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the ninth inning, the Rebs were set up with men on the corners after a clutch two-out base hit from freshman Tate Blackman (the first hit of his career after an 0-for-12 start). Freshman pinch hitter Will Golsan lifted a looping fly into the shallow right-center gap that looked like it would fall ... until Wright State's Ryan Fucci made this game-ending, diving catch:
If that ball gets down, it's rolling to the wall and we have a tie game with another man in scoring position. Hell, with both outfielders on the ground, maybe Golsan even scoots all the way around for a walk-off in-the-parker. Oh well.
2. ... and Game 3 was a thriller.
Top of the seventh (and final) inning, Rebs clinging to a 3-2 lead, bases loaded, one out. Then Errol Robinson with THIS:
That's a game-ending freak show of a double play. How's that karma feel Wright State?
3. It's too damn cold out here.
Baseball is supposed to be watched shirtless and sunburnt, not cacooned in jackets like the little brother from A Christmas Story. Friday's game -- which was moved up to 3 p.m. because of weather -- was wet and hovering around 27 degrees by the third inning (Christian Trent still managed to allow just one run and strike out nine) and it was so shitty on Saturday that they pushed the game back to another Sunday double header.
Needless to say, Right Field wasn't exactly packed ... though that didn't stop these bros from getting creative with their dinger downpour:
4. #whiskey&meat is served.
Speaking of that hot chocolate shower, Sikes Orvis sent out his first dinger of the season on Friday, blasting a two-run shot to right in the seventh. He slapped two doubles in Game 2, including one that hit off the wall about five feet short of another homer. After a quiet, one-hit opening weekend, it was good to see the big fella go 4-of-11 with four RBIs against Wright State.
5. Brady Bramlett does it again.
The bad news: JUCO transfer Sean Johnson, who was expected to be the Saturday starter this season, is likely headed for Tommy John surgery. The good news: Bramlett had another great outing and looks ready to step into the Saturday rotation spot. He gave up just one hit and no runs in a six-inning start and has racked up a ridiculous 19 strikeouts in his first two outings.
Sam Smith was moved back to Sunday to "give him an extra day of rest," but that sounds like a nice way of demoting him. Once again, he hit the wall in the fourth and had to be rescued from a bases-loaded jam by Wyatt Short.
What's goin on this week?
Tuesday: vs. Arkansas State (makeup from last week)
Wednesday: vs. UCA
Friday-Sunday: at UCF