#6 Canes Complete Weekend Sweep Of Bison, 6-4

Mike Kaffee

Hurricanes Baseball Reporter
[email protected]

Sunday afternoon at the Light, with the fans expecting another repeat blowout like the last two games where the offense exploded unmercifully for 37 runs on 39 hits almost got an entirely different outcome. Different day, different ballgame. When you have Alejandro Rosario on the mound you can expect almost anything and it is usually not good. He has been having an up/down season and today it was the latter. the Bisons jumped all over him and if not for an overturned call in the second, today’s outcome could have been totally different.  Every inning through the 7th, there was drama as their leadoff batter reached safely putting pressure on the defense as the Bisons kept on attacking and our pitching kept failing. Bad decision-making late in the game by Gino only added to the frustration.  If not for the 3 DPs to bail us out and the bat of Yohandy Morales, this game would have ended on a very sour note. With the lead changing 4 times over the course of the game, it took the 7th inning moon shot by Yoyo and the sure arm of Andrew Walters to insure that this Mother’s Day ended on a happier note as Miami comes from behind to SWEEP the Bisons of North Dakota State6-4.

If not broken, why change. Lineup same as Saturday night. Alejandro Rosario looking for the sweep on the mound.

The day started well for Alejandro striking out the initial batter. After that, it became a struggle for his remaining time in the game. Runners in scoring position every inning which the Bisons failed to capitalize on at the most critical times. They were 0-7 with RISP.
Miami, unlike the past two days, did not come out blazing recording-outs from CJ and Edgardo to start their half of the first. Yoyo would change the negative flow with a 2-0 count taking the ball deep to center 409′ for the initial scoring of the game to take the early lead 1-0.

Bisons answered right away taking advantage of Rosario not taking control of the game. An initial walk and single had runners on 1st and 2nd no outs. SAC bunt back to Rosario the throw to first gets by Gonzalez covering first. Both runners score and the batter winds up at third. Gino calls for a review claiming runner interference. A long review followed and eventually overturned stating runner ran inside the baseline causing interference on the throw. There are two lines running down the first base line and you have to be to the right of the line. Replay showed that he was left of the line.  The batter called out and base runners returned to their original bases (1,2). Next play DP 6-3. The overturned call was the definitive changing point in the game. The score would have been 2-1 Bisons, man on third, no outs.

In the 4th inning, Rosario gave up his third consecutive inning having the leadoff runner reach safely. Man on first, Jack Simonsen records his 5th HR of the season clearing the fence in center. This is followed by a HP and again Rosario is bailed out via the DP 4-6-3. Good thing because the next batter singles. NDS takes their first lead of the series 2-1. Could have easily been 4-1 if not for the batter’s interference call.

The 5th, once again a leadoff single, fail SAC 1-6 to get the lead runner followed by a FO to center and Rosario’s second walk would be too much for Gino and Alex McFarlane gets the call from the BP. The final line for Rosario was 2 runs on 7 hits with 2 strikeouts with a pair of walks, but it could have been a whole lot worse. Left Alex with runners on 1st and 2nd two outs. Walks the next batter to load the bases and you could hear the groans from the fans. This is not what the fans had expected to see. A sigh of relief with Alex getting the strikeout to end the threat once more by the Bisons.

Miami since the first had done nothing offensively. Pitelli opened the second with a single but got caught stealing. The third one out single by CJ but nothing. In the 4th, Dominic reaches base with 2 outs on a E4, advances to 2nd on a balk, and to 3rd on a PB only to have Dorian ground out 4-3. The 5th it was 3up/3down. All these complications were because of their starting pitcher Evan Sankey who had our number down pat.

With the change of pitchers the start of the 6th brought new light to the offense. Opening the inning with back-to-back singles by CJ and Edgardo generated new life into the team.

Runners advance one base on a 4-3 ground out by Max. Their 2B would be a factor in all the remaining plays. Burke’s grounder to second E4, one run scores. Runners on the corners. Pitelli slow grounder to second , run scores. Final out, runner on second, Dorian grounds out 4-3. Miami retakes the lead 3-2
Rather than bring in our setup pitcher Gage Ziehl, Gino decides to go pitcher/hitter matchup and go with JP Gates. Not a good decision. Single, HR and FO to center and Gino realizing the error of his decision now decides to go with Ziehl who strikes out the next two batters. Unfortunately, it cost 2 runs and once again a lead change with the Bisons taking a 4-3 lead.

7th inning stretch and time for the Canes to respond. One out walk to Renzo Gonzalez who advances to 2nd on a WP. Top of the order, CJ singles to shallow left and Gino once again, not thinking, gives the green light for Renzo to go home. No way, Jose. The ball was not hit deep enough and would have had runners on the corners with one out, and the heart of the order to follow. Gino was looking for the tie and instead, Renzo was sooo out with the ball long waiting for his arrival at home. Now with two out instead of one and runners on the corners, Edgardo singles which would have been the tying run but instead we now have runners on the corners with Yoyo coming to bat. Yoyo has a 3-0 count, green light. Long fly to right which the RF loses in the sun. Fortunately for him the ball curves foul. Unfortunely, for the Bisons,the very next pitch, it is bye, bye birdie 430′ hitting the track field in left giving Miami the lead 6-4. As Yoyo rounds third, you could almost hear Gino say, “thank you, thank you”. Yoyo second round tripper of the day and 11th of the season.

No more screwing around, in with Andrew Walters and out with the Bisons hope of salvaging game 3 to take home to the frozen tundra. For NDS, it is only dreams of what could have been except for Yohandy Morales.
Offensively, four in multiple numbers: CJ Kayfus 2-4;Edgardo Villegas 2-4; Dominic Pitelli 2-3(RBI) and the hero of the game Yohandy Morales 3-4(2HRs,4RBIS). 8 of the 10 hits were for singles. No doubles off the Miami bats today. Difficult to win games with only singles. Today, the HR was the difference maker.

Pitching-wise, we are in desperate need of a reliable Sunday pitcher. Without one will make it difficult post-season. We have Palmquist and after that it becomes uncertain. Ligon has been struggling and Garland when he is on, he is on. As for Rosario, I have been saying to move him and Garland around so he can work on his consistency. Might be too late with only one mid-week game left. Might have to look for a sleeper in the way of Ronaldo Gallo who has been pitching very well lately, but unknown whether he can go for any length of time. I just don’t have the confidence that Rosario is the answer. Sunday has become Pitching by Committee which should not be the case because Rosario is not getting the job done.

Be thankful for the SWEEP. We return Wednesday 6PM against UCF who we didn’t fare well when we last met losing 10-5 back on March 15th before the series with Clemson. Am assuming that Gino will go with Jake and hope that Rosario has his stuff for the FSU series next weekend.


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