This game is over as the Jackets fell to Florida State 17-11. Florida State will play as the No. 1 seed in the ACC Tournament on Wednesday, while the Jackets loss drops them to the No. 7 seed going into Jacksonville. The sweep for the Seminoles is their first over the Jackets since 2002 when they did it in Tallahassee. It is their first ever three game sweep at Russ Chandler Stadium.
There were a couple of interesting notes in today's postgame. Coach Danny Hall looked understandably upset about his team's performance and stressed the problem with allowing so many unforced errors on walks, hit batsmen, and fielding errors. Also, he was concerned with how many runners the Jackets left on base when they ahd the bases loaded and no outs in the both the 7th and 9th innings.
From Florida State, the only concern of the afternoon was Luke Tucker's relief appearance in the 7th. He failed to record an out and allowed three earned runs on five hits. He came out of the game after complaining to the trainer about his throwing shoulder. Other than that, the Seminoles are overjoyed with how well they finished the season as they should be.
The Jackets that appeared dead all of 10 minutes ago have a little bit of life in them. Tech left fielder Curtis Dupart just hit a double down the line to bring the Jackets within 17-10. For the inning, Tech has put four runs on the scoreboard. However, cetner fielder/reliever Danny Payne just struck out swining on a curve ball in the dirt to get the first out of the inning. I will update more as new developments arise.
Score is Florida State 17, Georgia Tech 10 with one out in the bottom of the 9th.
The Jackets offense went quiet in the 8th inning, and the Seminoles have just put up two runs in the 9th to extend their lead to a 17-6 score which is likely where it will end as center fielder/reliever Danny Payne just struck out FSU first baseman Brandon Reichert to go to the home half of the 9th.
Again, the score is Florida State 17, Georgia Tech 6 going into the bottom of the 9th. Final thoughts will come later as I try to wrap up what was a great performance by Florida State.
In the bottom of the 7th inning, the Jackets are showing some life. FSU brought struggling reliever Luke Tucker into this game and the Jackets have already put 4 up on the scoreboard. With the bases loaded and 0 outs in the inning, Luke Murton is at the plate in a 15-5 with a 2-1 count. This might get interesting.
As i Just finished that last sentence, Murton grounded into a double play. A run scored on the play, but any momentum the Jackets may have gained just stopped right there. The score is now Florida State 15-6 with two outs in he 7th.
Florida State has put up 15 runs on the scoreboard and this one is just in the top of the 5th. On the last plate appearance, FSU first baseman Brandon Reichert was hit by a pitch, but the ball bounced off of him and glanced off of GT catcher Matt Wieters' jaw. The trainer came out to take a look at him and he will stay in the game to catch. At this point in the season, losing Wieters would be devastating to the Jackets in the postseason.
In any case, the Jackets are losing 15-1 going into their half of the 5th. For the weekend, the Seminoles have outscored Georgia Tech by a combined score of 42-5. Both teams are bringing in their freshmen pitchers and playing their reserves in the field.
P.S. On a side note, the fans seemed to get a kick out of the tire roll contest between innings here. The contestant fell flat on his back in an effort to roll the tire down th efield throwing up a dust cloud from the warning track. For the record, his throw was a bit off to the left and ran into the fence, landing him well short of the season-long mark.
It is obvious that Chris Hicks was not the right choice to put out the flames on the fire in the third inning. Florida State has turned this game into an epic rout after putting a 9-spot on the scoreboard. Here is Hicks' hideous stat line: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 0 K, 5 BB, 1 HBP...Yikes!
Struass has not exactly been mowing down the Tech lineup, but with an 11 run lead I doubt that he will do anything but throw strikes and let his defense do all of the work behind him. Stranger things have happened in college baseball before with respect to comebacks, but it appears that the 'Noles fans should be getting ready to break out the brooms.
The score is now Florida State 12, Georgia Tech 1 as GT catcher Matt Wieters just nearly missed taking a 3-2 pitch out of the yard.
Starter Eddie Burns has beenchased out of this game in the top of the 3rd inning after loading the bases with no outs, and allowing FSU third baseman Jason Stidham to drive in two with a single. The new pitcher that will be charged with stopping the bleeding is Chris Hicks. It seems like the Jackets have been trying to stop the bleeding from the start of this series on Thursday as this Florida State lineup is on fire right now.
The score is now FSU 5-1 and the Seminoles are in position to pick up more.
In the bottom of the first, the Jackets picked up a run on shortstop Michael Fisher's 2-2 RBI single to drive in center fielder Danny Payne from first. The Jackets had an opportunity to put up more runs on the scoreboard with the bases loaded and no outs. However, starter Ryan Strauss settled down after a conference with head coach Mike Martin. Strauss struck out the next two hitters, and got the next hitter to pop out.
The Seminoles took some of that momentum into the top of the 2nd against Tech starter Eddie Burns. After retiring two batters on strikeouts, he allowed two RBI singles and a RBI double from FSU center fielder Mark Gildea.
With two outs in the bottom of the 2nd, the Jackets have a runner on 2nd after center fielder Danny Payne stole it with shortstop Michael Fisher up at the plate again.
Today's will finish the regular season for both teams as the Georgia Tech Seniors are being announced on field. Fans are still filing into their seats here, and it should be a large crowd. The weather could not have been any better for the series this weekend.
As far as the ACC is concerned, the Seminoles already know that they will be the No. 1 seed, and should be hearing their names called as a National No. 1 seed over the next couple of days. For Georgia Tech, their NCAA Tournament status is probably still secure even with the losses over the last two games. However, their seeding in the ACC Tournament has dropped considerably. Entering today's game, the Jackets had fallen down to the No. 7 slot. With a victory today, they can only climb one spot to the No. 6 slot. Miami is beating Duke and should hold on, and N.C. State is down to their last three outs against Clemson allowing this to happen.
Now for today's starters:
Florida State RHP Ryan Strauss (3.39 ERA/8-2/48 K/30 BB)
Georgia Tech RHP Eddie Burns (2.89 ERA/3-2/59 K/14 BB)
Strauss will not pitch longer than three innings according to Coach Mike Martin from yesterday's post-game comments. We shall see about that. For the Jackets, Burns will go as long as he is effective. The players are running out onto the field and we are about to get under way.
Tonight, the Seminoles came out and set the tone early with 7 runs in the first two innings and would not need any more than that in their 10-2 series-clinching victory. The series win is their first over Tech in the regular season since 2003, as FSU has not even won a single regular season contest against the Jackets since then.
In talking to Coach Martin after the game, he said that tomorrow's game will essentially a staff game with four pitchers being used. Ryan Strauss will start, but he will not go longer than 3 innings. With the 'Noles scoring 27 runs over the last two games, it might not matter who is on the hill.
Winniing pitcher: Matt Fairel (1-0)
Losing pitcher: David Duncan (6-4)
The series and the regular season will conclude for both teams as tomorrow's game starts at 4 p.m. Until then, take care sports fans!
While any good pitching effort might get lost in the hit parade that was this evening's game, FSU relief pitcher Matt Fairel pitched tremendously well in relief of starter Michael Hyde. He pitched a career-high 4.1 innings shutting out the Jackets in relief. Fairel also struck out a career-high five batters, and walked none.
Going into the top of the 9th, the score is now Florida State 10, Georgia Tech 2. The standa here at Russ Chandler Stadium are now virtually empty as it would be hard for any home fan to watch their team lose in consecutve days by a combined score of 27-4.
In the top of the 6th, the Florida State Seminoles may have put this game away for good as right fielder Jack Rye hit a two-run shot over the right field wall that just cleared the fence against Tech reliever Jared Hyatt. Some of the fans here at Russ Chandler are also feeling the same way as some of the fans here are departing from the ballpark.
The score is now 10-2 in the bottom of the 6th with the Jackets coming to the plate.
The Seminoles just picked up a run on an RBI double hit down the left field line by Brandon Reichert. The run chased Tech starter David Duncan out of this one. He gives way to reliever Jared Hyatt who will try to limit the damage done by the FSU lineup.
The score is now FSU 8-2 with one out in the top of the 6th
On a side note for Tech fans out there, I've been told that ex-first baseman Whit Robbins was able to take a swing tonight against Roger Clemens in his start for the Tampa Yankees. In his at-bat for the Fort Myers Miracle, he hit a fly ball out, according to sources inside the press box.
Since the seond inning, there has been no scoring in this game. Tech starter David Duncan has settled down some since the first inning where the 'Noles put up a four spot. Also, FSU reliever Matt Fairel has kept the Tech bats at bay after replacing starter Michael Hyde in the 2nd inning.
The score is FSU 7, Georgia Tech 2 going into the top of the 5th
P.S. Sorry about the last double post. My laptop just decided to spaz out and auto-post a past posting.
In the bottom of the third, the heac coach Mike Martin has just given starter Michael Hyde the hook after he hit Tech's Brad Feltes in the back on a 0-1 pitch to load the bases full with two outs. The hitter is now first baseman Tony Plagman who has driven the only runs of the night to this point for Tech.
In to face Plagman is FSU reliever Matt Fairel. Let's how this one develops...
After two innings, the Jackets have closer up the deficit to five runs. In the top half of the second, Florida State tacked on another run when right fielder Jack Rye scored from third on a botched play by Tech second baseman Patrick Long where he booted the throw from catcher Matt Wieters by not covering the bag on a steal attempt by FSU DH Travis Anderson.
The Jackets made their response on a RBI single to right center field by Tech first baseman Tony Plagman that drove in two.
Now, the Seminoles have a runner on 2nd and nobody out with first baseman Brandon Reichert at the plate and a 3-1 count. The score is FSU 7-2.
In the dictionary, it reads that deja vu is the illusion of having previously experienced something actually being encountered for the first time. Well, the Florida State Seminoles brought 11 players up to the plate against Tech's ace pitcher David Duncan in a game that is starting to look very much like the one I witnessed last night. In the inning, they were aided by three Tech errors and one walk. FSU third baseman Jason Stidham now has 6 RBI's for the weekend after hitting a 2-run double last inning.
To add injury to insult, FSU shortstop lined a fastball right back up the middle that hit hard off of Duncan's plant leg. While the ball caromed toward first base giving him an assist on the final out of the inning, Duncan walked very slowly back to the dugout.
Tech's shortstop Michael Fisher is now at the plate in the bottom of the first with the score FSU 6-0.
I've just arrived here in Atlanta, and it could not be a more perfect evening. Its sunny outside without a cloud in the sky. The turnout appears to be better than last night, and there is a slight breeze coming into the press box here at Russ Chandler Stadium.
Tonight's starters are:
Florida State starter RHP Michael Hyde (3.37 ERA/9-2/52 K/21 BB/1.33 WHIP)
After last night's 17-2 drubbing for the Jackets, this game certainly has the feel of a "must win" kind of game. For Florida State, a victory tonight would allow them to have a shot at the sweep and would also make great strides to impress the Selection Commitee when it comes time to rank the National seeds. While Duncan apparently was not well rested enough to throw last night, Coach Hall has elected to start his ace tonight and he will need to play up to that task against a Seminoles lineup that has ben on fire over the last several weeks.
The 6' 8" southpaw let loose his first pitch of the game to FSU second baseman Tony Thomas, Jr. at 7:06 p.m. and it was a fastball inside.
The thoughts in the postgame from the Florida State sideline were obviously jovial considering the lopsided victory. However, Coach Martin and the rest of the players seemed reserved in that they realized there were two games left in this series against a capable Tech team. Last week, FSU took game one against Clemson only to the lose the series at home. They certainly do not want to experience that again.
On the Tech side, there was on interesting note. Coach Danny Hall chose to use Ryan Turner instead of David Duncan tonight due to the fact that he wanted to give Duncan more rest for his next start which will come either tomorrow or Sunday. I will update you on that when I arrive at the ball park tomorrow night. Until then, good night sports fans!
The folks here at Russ Chandler Stadium have cleared out in a hurry as there is little to get excited about for the home team. We are now going to the bottom of 9th inning. The score is now Florida State 17, Georgia Tech 2. Barring most likely the biggest comeback in baseball history, Florida State starter Bryan Henry will win his 14th game of the season and be the first undefeated pitcher since 2005 when reliever Kevin Lynch went 12-0 in 46 relief appearances.
Florida State reliever Matt Birge is mowing down the Tech hitters in the 9th, and this appears to be the merciful end for Tech.
In fact, the situation has become fully developed and is now no longer a situation at all. The Jackets two run 5th inning is now a distant memory.
Florida State went on a tear in their half of the 6th to break the double digit barrier by putting up a four spot on a sac fly by center fielder Mark Gildea, an RBI single by Ruairi O'Connor, and a 2-RBI double by Tony Thomas. Thomas' RBI total is now at three for the day.
The score is now 11-2 going into the bottom half of the 6th. Florida State starter Bryan Henry is continuing to work into and out of trouble in this game, but with a 9 run lead should not have any problem finishing off the Jackets.
With Seminoles starter Bryan Henry working in cruise control already, the Seminoles have added four more runs in the top of the 4th to put the score up to 7-0. All of those runs are attributed to starter Ryan Turner. While the Jackets had the bullpen warming up midway through the inning, head coach Danny Hall elected to stick with his starter. However, Florida State made Hall and Turner both pay for that decision.
To give an idea of how well Henry has thrown since the first, he has retired five out of the last six hitters that have come plateward through 3.1 innings pitched. Tech has gotten just one runner over to second since the first, and that came affter catcher Matt Wieters stole his second base of the season.
In the bottom of the 4th, the Jackets have a runner on with two outs. However, seven runs against ace pitcher Bryan Henry will be tough to come by.
As an addition to the note I made earlier, Tech shortstop Michael Fisher is having a tough time in this game adjusting to being in the starting lineup. For the game, he is now 0-for-2 with a groundout to third and a pop out to the shortstop.
In the top of the 3rd, the Jackets had two outs on FSU, but gave them two more when Fisher threw away two consecutive ground balls which gave the Seminoles runners on 2nd and 3rd with two outs. On the next at bat, Florida State third baseman Jason Stidham looped a ball over Tech third baseman Brad Feltes' head to drive in both runs.
The score is now Florida State 3-0, and Bryan Henry is starting to get into a rhythm which is bad news for the home team.
In Florida State's half of the first inning, the Seminoles rattled off three consecutive singles to load the bases full after a Tony Thomas, Jr. pop up led off the inning. However, Tech starter Ryan Turner was able to escape the inning allowing just one run on a sacrifice fly hit to right field by designated hitter Travis Anderson.
In the Jackets' half of the first, Bryan Henry got into a bases loaded jam after getting the first two Tech hittters out on ground balls to the left side of the infield. Unlike Turner, Henry did not allow a run as a he struck out Tech second baseman Patrick Long on a 3-2 cut fastball that tailed back over the inside corner of the plate after starting out of the strike zone.
Both teams have been working the count early and often which should shorten the life spans of each starting pitcher. Only two hitters have left the batter's box without looking at more than two pitches in the first inning.
Going into the top of the 2nd, the score is now 1-0 Florida State.
Georgia Tech and Florida State start their three game set tonight to end their regular seasons and set the tone for their respective runs through both the ACC and NCAA tournaments. There are several changes of note in tonight's contest: For starters, Tech shortstop Michael Fisher is back in the starting lineup for the first time since May 6th when he took a ground ball to the face against South Florida. Also, Tech is starting Ryan Turner over their usual ace pitcher David Duncan.
Here are the numbers on both Henry and Turner:
Florida State RHP Bryan Henry (2.47 ERA/13-0/102 K/21 BB)
Georgia Tech LHP Ryan Turner (4.65 ERA/5-3/44 K/12 BB)