Mike Kaffee

Hurricanes Baseball Reporter
[email protected]

Notre Dame 0-6 in ACC play returned home for their first home series and came away with a victory, taking down a lifeless Miami team 6-2. The weather played a factor with the temperature at game time being 43 degrees. Like the temperature, the Miami bats were cold striking out 12 times with 9 scattered hits. Unable to move the line, they left 11 runners on base and when they were fortunate enough to get RISP, they were 2-12 (.167). Unfamiliar with playing on turf plus the cold weather, the Canes just weren’t able to generate any type of rhythm in their play. Gage Ziehl looked sharp through the first 4 innings not allowing a base runner to reach base. The Miami batters in their one shining moment of the day had back-to-back doubles in the second to give Gage a small bit of insurance. This ran out in the 5th, with the Irish answering with 2 runs with the first of three triples and three more runs over the course of the next two innings that followed. The defense was sluggish and showed no sense of urgency as the Irish were able to do what we failed to do the entire game: moving the line. Finally, in the 8th, the Canes trailing 5-1, showed a bit of urgency with a run and trying to activate the Cardiac Canes managing to get the bases loaded only to see this opportunity like the others before it fell by the wayside. The Irish added to their lead responding to the Canes taking advantage of a couple of errors to seal the victory. 

Miami, behind Gage Ziehl, looked very sharp on the field retiring the first 10 batters he faced before giving up a one-out walk in the 4th. After a scoreless first inning, the Canes opened the second with back-to-back doubles (Torres,Scanlon) for what would be the only firepower they would mount until the 8th inning. No outs with Scanlon standing on second, is where he would remain. The same in the 4th, he was left stranded after recording hs second double of the day. The 5th, would be Edgardo also with a double and with one out and nowhere to go.

With the Irish into their 2nd rotation of seeing Ziehl at the plate opened the 5th with their first hit. Two batters later, their second hit (triple) and their first run to tie the score at one. A ground out 6-3 gave them the go-ahead run and they never looked back. It was also marked the end of any sense of urgency to the way The Canes played in the field and at bat.

Gage would give up two more triples over the course of the next two innings with the second resulting in an additional two runs.

In the 8th, trailing by 4 (5-1), Dorian opened the inning with a double, but two strikeouts that followed was a rehash of how everything today went for the Canes. With no one in the starting rotation able to get a hit with runners on base, JD turned to Jake Kulikowski to PH for Carrier who was 0-3 today. Jake singled through the left side scoring Dorian. Costello walks to load the bases and for the first time today, an opportunity to work their Magic. JD goes to the bench once more and it comes to Gaby Gutierrez to have his Magical moment of changing the entire course of the game. Runs the count to 0-2 before he makes contact with the ball but not what was hoped for: ground out to first. 

The Irish responded in the bottom half of the 8th with a corresponding run on opening walks and an error (E5) to load the bases. Julian Hernandez strikes out the next batter only to have Daniel Cuvet fumble the ball for the second time this inning not being able to get the runner at the plate but managed to record the out 5-3. Scanlon ended the inning on a pickoff 2-5, but the Irish got the insurance run they were looking for.

There would be no Cardiac Canes in the 9th with it being put to rest on Blake’s 6-4-3 DP and Dorian sealing it with the Canes’ 12th strikeout of the game.

JD stated after the game; “There wasn’t a whole lot of energy from our side, “It’s our first time away from home and not a big crowd, and we were flat. Even when we were up early, there wasn’t a whole lot of energy in the dugout.” 

Offensively and defensively, the team was not ready to play.  Batting just 250 but more importantly as stated earlier 2-12 with RISP. Two players with multiple hits: Edgardo Villegas 2-4(double); Jack, and Scanlon 3-4 (2doubles,RBI). Two other players with doubles: (Dorian Gonzalez, Jason Torres) 

If Miami intends to rebound and not lose their first ACC series, they need to adjust to the turf, weather, and more importantly a few HRs added to their resume. Whether we want to believe it or not, this team lives or dies via the long ball. We have problems not being able to move the line and if we expect to come away with a win it has to be via the long route. Again the team will be battling the cold tomorrow. Rafe will need the support offensively and defensively to have a deciding game on Sunday. First pitch 2PM.., 


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