By: Mike Kaffee, Hurricanes Baseball Reporter
After a crushing weekend series against the Noles, Miami bounced back with a vengeance with their bats scoring more runs in one inning,(7) than they did for the entire weekend blowout where for a total of 3 days only able to come away with a total of 6 runs. They also matched the total hits (11) in three innings that took them the entire series to come up with. Miami took an unprecedented start leading by 12-0 and watched during the course of the game see this lead get slowly chopped away to 5. Jake Garland struggled tonight through 5 innings as the Owls fought back getting to within 6 before Jordan Dubberly came in the 6th and put out the fire and holding the Owls to one more run coming in the 9th inning on a SF. As good as the Canes looked through the 1st 4 innings, not so for the 2nd half of the game after putting up 14 runs in the first 4 innings and then totally shutting down. It was back to looking at what we has seen all season with no runs, tonight leaving 7 on base, and striking out 7 times (6-8th inn) totalling 13 for the game. If it wasn’t for the effectiveness of Jordan Dubberly putting the stopper on a resurging Owl team, this could have been much closer than the final outcome. This is not to take away how impressive the Canes looked in taking their frustrations out from their worst series ever, but not acceptable in taking their foot off the throttle and letting an Owls team get back into the ballgame. A win is a win is a win. Tonight hopefully back on the right track for the important series with Va.
Lineup, seems to be settling down as Gino was looking for raw power and he definitely got it three 3 HRs, and 4 doubles thrown into the mix of 17 hits where everyone with the exception of Petelli got a hit. The middle of the order definitely was a force to be reckoned with tonight as the Brothers and Toral collecting 3 hits each and Alex a career high of 6 RBIs. Gil struggling with strikeouts, still struck out twice but also came away with a pair of doubles and an RBI. Gabe who has seen limited action, may not so now after going long for his second of the season in a 2-3 outing. For now, expect that this will be the lineup moving forward, until not.
The first inning Miami made their statement headlined by Alex Toral putting 4 runs on the board with a Grand Salami on a line drive shot to right center. The second, Miami put the exclamation point on the scoreboard with 12 players coming to bat and taking away season high 8 runs on 7 hits. Miami would not see the first out recorded until the 10th batter in the order,Gabe, recorded the out but not without scoring a run on a SF to center.Gabe would come back one inning later to register a solo HR over the LF fence.
It wouldn’t be until the second inning with the Owls trailing by 12-0 that they were able to respond. Jake who looked sharp in the 1st inning taking the Owls down in order, started showing a weakening in his delivery. Inning started with an error by Pitelli, which FAU took total advantage of scoring on a double,HP,and losing a full count walk for the first run. SF two batters later decreased the 12 run lead to 10.Got one run back in the 3rd with Anthony 4th Hr of the season taking the lead back to 11 until The Owls answered with 4 of their own, with 2 HRs and now the lead was down to 7. Gabe brought it back to 8 on a solo shot of his own in the 4th.
Garland was struggling giving up 6 runs in two innings which included hitting 2 batters and the two bombs, plus his pitch count was creeping up fast having thrown 73 pitches through 4 innings. No doubt, the 5th was as far as he would go and almost did not make it through giving up two more runs with a pair of doubles and the lead down to 14-8.
In the 6th, as expected Jake did not return to the mound, but Jordan Dubberly was brought in to stop the bleed. After bringing the score to within 6 runs, Jordan shut the machine down allowing for only two hits in the next 4 innings and one run in the 9th on a SF set up by a Gil Error.It was fortunate the Jordan pitching was so controlling, because the bats were silent from the 5th inning on with no runs able to cross home plate.
Offensively, we are talking about two Miami teams. The one in the first half which was knocking everything out of the infield and 3 over the fence. Then there was the other Miami team that we have seen all to often not being able to do anything. Strikeout continue to remain an issue with 13 more tonight. If you look at the stats. you ask yourself what is he talking about. We batted an overall .370 for the night and .316 with RISP. Against LH pitchers .474. These numbers were compiled mostly through the first 4 innings when we were putting runs on the board. The 17 hits were highlighted with 6 of our 9 players in multiple numbers. Lala 2-6 (RBI), DC 3-6 (RBI), CDC 3-5 (double), Toral 3-5 (double,GS HR,6 RBIs), Gil 2-5 (2doubles)Gabe 2-3 (HR,2RBI). Additionally Anthony Vilar with his team leading 4th HR of the year.
Defensively, two errors resulted in 2 unearned runs. CDC continues making special plays in the OF sacrificing his body to make the play. No mental errors tonight which in itself is a mark improvement.
Pitching brings up the question mark with Jake Garland.Tonight’s performance did not do anything for him in making his move to Sunday afternoon. On the other hand Jordan Dubberly did make an excellent statement of moving into the weekend rotation. Does this mean that Gino is going to stay with Federman on Sunday as his only option? I hope not. Whatever you can say how badly Jake looked tonight, I just don’t think Gino is ready to Move Jordan just yet to a weekend rotation. 4 times Daniel has proven he is not a starter in any capacity this season. His ERA is now at 9 but who has Gino have that he is willing the roll the dice with. Jake was the answer but after tonight, who Knows.
We will know soon enough. Team goes to Charlottesville this weekend to face off against the Cavaliers of Virginia in a 3 game ACC series. First pitch at 4PM with Rosario on the mound and Mederos Saturday night.. As for Sunday, hopefully we won’t have to worry who is pitching with the series already decided with two decisive wins for the Hurricanes.