#5 Canes Unable To Complete Sweep, Lose To Pittsburgh, 9-4

Mike Kaffee

Hurricanes Baseball Reporter
[email protected]

Pitt Panthers put the BIG HURT on the Miami team that forgot to bring their bats to today’s games. Billy Corcoran, Panther’s starter, did a number on the Miami hitters for 7 innings holding them to just three hits. Like yesterday, they struck early with a first-inning HR, but unlike yesterday added a 5 spot in the second forcing an early departure of starter Alejandro Rosario. It was pitching-by-committee once again as Miami continues to struggle to find a Sunday starter. Yoyo gets back one of the 6 runs in the 4th with his 8th homer of the season but receives no support from his teammates in adding to the solo shot until the 9th inning. Trailing 9-1, a 3 run late rally brought about with a three-run downtowner by Zach was not nearly enough to provide a second coming of the Mark Light Magic. Panthers prevent the Sweep but lose the series.

The only change to the lineup was Carlos Perez getting catching duties batting 9th and Max taking the DH slot. Zach who had DH duties in last night’s game is in RF for today’s game replacing Mike Rosario. Gino having the perfect opportunity of switching out Rosario for Garland decides to stick with Alejandro.

Like yesterday, Pitt takes the early lead wth a solo shot from Tatem Levins over the LF fence giving them a 1-0 lead. Unlike yesterday, Miami failed to answer not only in the first but the silence of the bats would continue to do so for the remainder of the game. Where we needed all hands on deck, someone forgot to ring the bell to wake everyone up. Miami got their first baserunner in the second on a two-out walk showcased two innings later with a 405′ solo homer from Yoyo putting Miami within 5 runs. Rather than stir the fires, we would not see another base runner until the 7th. A lead-off double by Max was left stranded on second with two of the next striking out (Burke,Zach) and Pitelli fouling out squeezed in between.

While Miami was struggling to find a hit or even a walk, the Panther hitters were doing a number on Rosario. By the second inning already leading 1-0, they literally blew him off the mound with 5 additional runs on 4 hits and a walk. Tatam Levins after homering in the first gives a repeat performance in the second with two onboard. A 41 pitch inning and no action in the BP.

After walking the leadoff batter in the 3rd, Rosario’s day was finally short-circuited taking the walk of shame and hopefully, Gino has finally gotten the message. It was another Sunday afternoon of pitching-by-committee seeing 7 pitchers rotated out of the BP.

Ronaldo Gallo relieving Rosario caged the Panthers for three innings only allowing a walk for the 9 batters faced striking out 3 and doing away with Rosario’s walk with a DP.

The 6th, Pitt added two runs to their already 6. Runners on the corners, a single to right gets under the glove of Zach clearing the bases with the batter winding up at third. 

If things weren’t going so bad today, it got even worse in the 8th. A possible injury to Anthony Arguelles who had to leave the game after just 4 pitches. JD seeing something wrong in the mechanics of Anthony’s delivery made a trip to the mound. After a lengthy discussion with the trainer, JD on the better side of caution decides not to let Anthony proceed. Let’s hope this was a precautionary move and not an injury to the arm.

Pitt leading 8-1 into the 9th adds another run coming about on a pair of walks, WP,PB, and with runners on 2nd and 3rd, an infield single to second brings in their 9th run.

Miami has done nothing since Yoyo’s HR in the 4th, with the exception of a double in the 7th by Max which went nowhere. Just three hits to show for today and a lone run after a 17-run, 15-hit performance  Saturday night, decided it was time to exercise a bit of muscle. Back-to-back singles by Yoyo and Max to start the 9th and the rally noise starts generating from the few fans remaining. Two outs later and Yoyo and Max still on 1st and 2nd, Zach steps to the plate and delivers his 4th of the year going 354′ to left. Doubling our hit production for the day but falling far short of another Magical moment, Miami takes it on the chin with a 9-4 loss. Not the sweep we were looking for but still our 6th ACC series win.

Offensively, 6 total hits with Yoyo and Max getting 4 of them (2 apiece). Maxwell Romero 2-4(Double); Yohandy Morales 2-4(HR,RBI). Zach Levenson had the other base hit: 1-4(HR,3RBI).

Location, Location, Location. That was what was needed from Alejandro Rosario and again fails to deliver. Last week was the exception, but overall he has shown that he is not our Sunday starting pitcher. As mentioned, today was the perfect opportunity to have started Jake, having pitched Tuesday night, and move Rosario to mid-week to work on his control. This love affair that Gino has with Alejandro has to come to an end. Utilizing 7 from the BP is unacceptable if your starter can’t get by the 3rd inning. 59 Pitches today, 54 after 2 innings. Jake might not be the answer because he also has had problems on Sunday, but he has earned the opportunity for a second chance.

The BP was thrown the life preserver in attempting to bail out the mess created. They did a great job most notably Ronaldo Gallo who pitched a career-high 3 innings and took care of business of the 8 of 9 batters faced.

It only gets tougher from here on out and hopefully, the three-run rally in today’s 9th, is something we can spin off against Stetson Tuesday evening at 6PM. Georgia Tech series next weekend we have to be at our best for we will be playing on their turf.


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