A cold start from the MSU defense wasn't enough to stop the hot bats of the Maroon and White offense as the Bulldogs pounded out 14 runs on 17 hits connecting for three or more runs in three different innings on their way to their 16th-consecutive win to start the 2013 season, with a 14-2 triumph.
MSU was led by a quartet of Dawgs with multi-base hits and big days. Brett Pirtle had his first multi-hit ball game of the season as he recorded a double and home run in his first two at bats after coming into the ball game with three hits the entire season to-date. Hunter Renfroe hit his team-leading third home run on a 2-for-3 day with four RBIs. Alex Detz also remained hot on the season reaching base in all four tries with a 2-for-2 effort on a double, triple and a couple of walks while scoring two runs and driving in another and Adam Frazier stayed consistent at the plate reaching in three of his four at bats with a 2-for-3 night.
The night started off rough for MSU starter Brandon Woodruff as he was only able to record one out on the day before being pulled for senior southpaw Luis Pollorena. Woodruff had given up a lead-off single and hit a batter while getting a ground out to bring in the run.
But Pollorena (3-0) would shut the door retiring the first nine batters he faced with the first four being strikeouts. He would carry the Bulldogs 3.1 innings, giving up just one hit on a run with five strikeouts to earn the win.
Meanwhile, the Bulldog bats were hot. After two batters reached in the first but were left stranded, State would score in the next seven innings putting up at least three runs in three of those innings. A 1-0 score would last just one full inning as MSU would then outscore the Delta Devils 14-1 the rest of the ball game to get the 14-2 win.
Five Bulldog hurlers were on the mound Tuesday with Preston Brown, Trevor Fitts and John Marc Shelly following Pollorena respectively. The three pitchers combined for 5.1 innings with just two hits and no runs striking out six.
The Maroon and White now turn to a pivotal final weekend before SEC play against one of the top hitting teams in the nation, Central Arkansas. Central Arkansas(12-1) came to Starkville last year and stole a win from the Bulldogs and return a solid team as they have outscored their opponents by 90 runs this season and have reeled off nine consecutive wins.
Game times this weekend are 6:30 Friday (Jacob Lindgren 2-0, 0.98), 2 p.m. Saturday (Kendall Graveman 1-0, 1.80) and 1:30 p.m. Sunday (Evan Mitchell 0-0, 2.08 or Will Cox 2-0, 0.68).
- PIRTLE POWER: Brett Pirtle came into the ball game batting .125 with only three hits in 24 at bats. In his first two at bats, he had a double and a solo home run. The power is definitely showing in his bat as three of his five hits as a Bulldog have been multiple-base hits (two doubles, one home run).
- ILL TAKE BEASTLY MAN BEAST FOR 500, ALEX: Alex Detz continued his incredible hitting tonight as he went 2-for-2 with a double, triple, RBI, run and two walks as he reached base in each of his first four plate appearances. He came into the game leading the team in batting average (.447; 4th in SEC), on-base percentage (.577; 2nd in SEC), RBIs (16; 4th in SEC) and doubles (4 T-6th)
- EXCELLENCE OF EXECUTION: As you saw in our preview of the week, Frazier is one of the most consistent plate men in the SEC as he was a member of the top 15 in nearly every statistical category. With his 2-for-3 day, the SEC’s leading hitter stretched his on base streak to 11 games although he had to start a new hitting streak without getting a hit Sunday.
- BRADFORD CONTINUES TO REACH: CT Bradford came into Sunday’s final game with a 10-game hitting streak and hits in 13 of 14 games before going 0-for-4 at the plate. It also ended his base-reaching streak as he had managed to run the bases in each of the first 14 games. He got back on track with a hit Tuesday night in his fourth plate appearance with a double and finished the game 1-for-4 with a run scored.
- RENF-BRO: Hunter Renfroe is a monster and doesn't look at all bothered after his injury. The junior power bat smashed his first two balls only to see them caught at the warning track (one for a sacrifice fly), but he would get his runs. His third at bat was an RBI single into left followed up in the sixth by a two-run home run deep to right center field. He ended the ballgame with four RBIs and his team-leading third home run. Since coming back from his injury, Renfroe is 4-for-10 with five RBIs.
- DOUBLE-DAWGS KEEP DOUBLIN': The Bulldogs recorded their 20th and 21st double play of the season and now lead the SEC and the country for the second year in a row.
- COLD WEATHER, HOT BATS: After the Bulldogs failed to score in the first inning, they preceded to put up runs in each of the next six as they went from trailing 1-0 after one, to leading 13-2 after seven. It was State’s fifth double-digit run game of the season. The 17 hits were the most since the opening game of the season. The nine multi-base hits (Six doubles, one triple and two home runs) were the most this season.
- WHAT'S IN MY BELLY: Homemade Chinese food by my wife... Yes! Yes! Yes!
(Puddy isn't happy about this one)