By Braden Simmons | Reporter
The Baylor baseball team was defeated 12-2 by Texas State University on Tuesday at Baylor Ballpark.
Even with the defeat, head coach Steve Rodriguez was positive about being able to give the newcomers some time on the field.
“It was a great opportunity to get new faces out there and a bunch of arms in,” Rodriguez said. “It is good to see in games like today where guys fit in our lineup or if someone gets hurt. I told the guys to take advantage of these opportunities because you don’t know how many times they will come.”
The Bears were not as sharp in the field as they were during the weekend making three costly errors through the first five innings and five wild pitches that resulted in run production from the Bobcats. The Bobcats scored runs in five consecutive innings to take the commanding victory over the Bears.
The Bears got on the board in the first inning with a one-out bases-loaded fielder’s choice by senior designated hitter Hunter Seay.
Freshman infielder Trey Richardson entered the game for injured sophomore Ricky Martinez in the first inning and remained in the game at second base.
Freshman shortstop Benjamin Greer recorded his first collegiate hit in the second inning with a double to left-center field. Rodriguez said he was pleased with Greer getting some playing time.
“It’s great for Ben to get his first hit out of the way,” Rodriguez said. “He has some learning to do still, but anytime he can get game experience is a plus.”
In his second start, freshman Hambleton Oliver pitched two scoreless innings, allowing only two hits and adding a strikeout. Oliver was relieved by sophomore Anderson Needham in the third.
The Bears took a 2-0 lead in the third inning when senior left fielder Mack Mueller drove in junior right fielder Davion Downey on a single to center field.
Texas State fought back in the fourth inning. With two outs in the inning, right fielder Peyton Lewis singled to right field scoring the first run for the Bobcats.
Rodriguez pulled Needham for redshirt junior Jacob Ashkinos during a bases-loaded situation, but the Bobcats then took the lead 3-2 on two wild pitches. An extra-base hit by leadoff hitter Will Hollis gave Texas States a 4-2 lead.
The Bobcats added to their lead in the sixth inning with a one-run single followed by a three-run home run to blow the game open at 9-2. A two-run home run in the seventh made it 11-2 in favor of the visitors.
Senior righty pitcher Hayden Kettler said he knows even though the team didn’t play well today, they know from their performance this past weekend, they can compete with anyone.
“Early in the year we can look back on winning against three great teams,” Kettler said. “It gives us confidence and even though on days like today when we don’t necessarily play our best, we are still capable of beating anybody in the country and we can build off that.”
The Bears will be on the road against Cal Poly University this weekend. First pitch will be at 8 p.m. CT Friday in San Luis Obispo, Calif.