Dates: Friday, April 29th – Sunday, May 1st
Good Guys: Texas Tech Red Raiders (31-12, 12-3)
Bad Guys: TCU Horned Frogs (29-10, 10-5)
Location: Lupton Stadium | Fort Worth, Texas
Game Notes: Preview | PDF
TV/Stream: Friday – FS1; Saturday – FSSW+; Sunday – GoFrogs.com
Radio/Stream: Broadcast Affiliates
This is for all of the baseballs. Separated by just two games in the Big 12 standings, I think it’s easy to think that whoever wins this series is in the driver’s seat to win the Big 12. As of right now, I think TCU is the better team, they’ve got better pitching and playing in Fort Worth isn’t going to be easy. Also note that Ty Damron gets the start on Sunday. Damron has been relegated to a mid-week starter, but I think this is the right move as Damron has pitched well as of late. As noted, TCU freshman Luken Baker won’t pitch this weekend (he’s been fantastic and is 3-1, 1.70 on the year) but will play in the field where he’s hitting .363 and has been all around terrific for the Horned Frogs all year.
Baseball American’s Teddy Cahill previews the series and talked with head coach Tim Tadlock, who knows how big this series is:
Coach Tim Tadlock said he knows where Texas Tech stands in the NCAA Tournament picture, but his focus remains on getting his team to play its best baseball.
“I’m guilty of looking at it, probably just because it’s human nature to look at it,” Tadlock said. “But the biggest thing as far as the team is we really just need to get back to playing good baseball. We know if we go in there get two of three at TCU, it puts us in a good position. We want to run toward those expectations, not run from them.”
LAJ’s Krista Pirtle previews the series as well and loved her note about the biggest difference between these two teams in Big 12 play has been team fielding percentage, where Texas Tech is at .979, while TCU is last at .959. Again, this is just Big 12 play, but maybe it comes down to overall defense.
Game 1: Friday, April 29th @ 6:00 pm
Texas Tech Starting Pitcher: RHP Davis Martin (6-0, 2.39)
TCU Starting Pitcher: LHP Dalton Horton (7-0, 2.12)
Final Score & Box Score: Texas Tech 7, TCU 3 (recap | box score)
Davis Freaking Martin. Heck of an effort from Martin, who went 6.1 innings, for 3 hits, 2 runs, 1 earned, walking 2 and striking out 3, while moving to 7-0 on the year. Martin threw 49 of 84 pitches for strikes and to hold TCU to just 3 hits is nothing short of terrific. Robert Dugger pitched the final 2.2 frames, allowing 3 hits and a run, walking none and striking out 2 and threw an amazing 39 of 56 for strikes.
The Texas Tech offense was down by a run early and came back in the 4th on a Hunter Hargrove sacrifice fly, scoring Cory Raley and then taking the lead in the 5th inning on a Stephen Smith single, scoring Tyler Floyd. Texas Tech broke the game open in the 6th inning, socring 4 runs on 3 hits and 2 TCU errors. Smith was 4-6 on the day, including a triple with 2 RBI. Eric Gutierrez was 3-5, with a home run and scoring 2 runs. Cory Raley was 2-5 and scored 2 runs.
Oh, and we mentioned the fielding percentage in the preview and Texas Tech had 1 error while TCU had 3. TCU melted down in that 6th inning.
Game 2: Saturday, April 30th @ 4:00 pm
Texas Tech Starting Pitcher: LHP Steven Gingery (3-1, 3.25)
TCU Starting Pitcher: RHP Brian Howard (5-2, 3.88)
Final Score & Box Score: TCU 13, Texas Tech 6 (recap | box score)
Just wen you somewhat think that Ryan Moseley is back he falters like he did last week and how he did today. Starter Steven Gingery pitched pretty well, going 4 innings and allowing 4 hits, 1 ru, walking 2 and striking out 3. Moseley came in to start the 5th inning and he didn’t record an out as TCU would put up 7 flipping runs before Texas Tech could manage out of the inning. Moseley walked 3, hit 2 batters and allowed just 1 hit in 25 pitches. At the time that Moseley stepped on the mound, Texas Tech had handed him a 5-1 lead and it was gone in 25 pitches. Ty Harpeneau didn’t make things better as he finished out the game, allowing 5 hits, and 4 runs. I think at this point, Tadlock just conceded and saved some arms for Sunday.
Tyler Neslony was 4-6 on the day with 2 RBI, while Tanner Gardner was 2-4 and Cory Raley was 2-5 with 4 RBI, which included an RBI single and a 3-run home run. Eric Gutierrez also hit a bomb, going 1-4 on the day.
Game 3: Sunday, May 1st @ 1:00 pm
Texas Tech Starting Pitcher: RHP Ty Damron (2-2, 5.89)
TCU Starting Pitcher: LHP Rex Hill (2-2, 5.40)
Final Score & Box Score: Texas Tech 3, TCU 1 (recap | box score)
Heck of a pitching effort by everyone on staff. Only 5 hits allowed all day, a bit heavy on the walks with 6, but who the heck cares. Ty Damron pitched 5.0 innings, allowing 4 hits, 1 run, walking 4 and striking out 5. Hayden Howard pitched some huge innings, in relief of Damron, going 3.2 innings, allowing just 1 hit. Robert Dugger had trouble with the final out, but Parker Mushinski got the final out and his first save of the year. Both teams only had 6 hits all game, but Texas Tech was able to push across two more runs. Stephen Smith was 1-5 with an RBI, Tyler Floyd was 1-2, scoring a run and Eric Gutierrez didn’t record an out, but a sacrifice fly would score Smith.
This win moves Texas Tech to 14-4 overall in the Big 12, two games ahead of Oklahoma State, who is 12-6 on the year and drops TCU to 11-7. Texas Tech has two Big 12 series remaining, Kansas and West Virginia. Kansas is 5-9 in the Big 12 and West Virginia is 8-9. Let’s do this.