Tallahassee, Florida – On a three-game losing streak, it looked like Florida State had finally gotten the hit they so desperately needed to stop the slide, but they couldn’t hold on long enough for the win. Thanks to their four-game losing streak, FSU really has only themselves to blame. Notre Dame took the lead early in the second on a hit-per-pitch and it could have been worse had it not been for a strikeout and a rush to end the inning. The ‘Noles bounced back with their own late-inning run after a walk and two singles. A home run followed by two more HBPs in the fourth ended Bryce Hubbart’s day sooner than Seminole fans would like.
Jackson Baumeister came into the game and threw a great 3.2 innings while striking out five and giving up only one walk. FSU took advantage by scoring three runs in the seventh to take the lead from a march, HBP of their own and singles from Tyler Martin and Colton Vincent, but pen struggles raised their ugly heads again. After starting the inning with a three-pitch strike, Wyatt Crowell gave up a 3-1 walk and a 3-1 brace resulting in a run and bringing in Davis Hare. Hare finished the set with no further damage but started the ninth with an 0-2 HBP. Jonah Scolaro came in and quickly walked the first batter he saw. ND tried to sacrifice bunt and Scolaro went to a full count before inducing swing bunt. A strike had an FSU takedown on a two-run win, but a chopper high in the middle scored a run as Jackson Greene struggled to get the ball out of his glove and kicked high home. FSU would be unable to reach base in the ninth and would lose 5-4.
Thread of the game
Baumeister’s big day
Jackson Baumeister grew with each appearance. Tonight was his best night of the season. The freshman would come on in relief in the fourth and close Notre Dame’s bats with two runners on base. Baumeister went from there with a final line of 3.2 IP, 0 H, 5 K, 1 BB. Baum would be most impressive in his final inning, knocking out all three Irish batters this inning.
Vincent shows his worth
Colton Vincent has been pretty good behind the plate but his home plate work leaves something to be desired. Vincent made good contacts but hit defenders too often and his average suffered. Finally if he breaks through. Vincent had what should have been the simple game winner in the seventh on his 2-4 and had at least one hit in nine of the last ten games. FSU isn’t looking for much on Vincent’s plate, but lately it’s getting a lot more than expected.
Hubbart’s short outing
When FSU’s starting rotation is on, they are one of the best in the country. Today was not one of those days. Hubbart started today’s game having had the most starts this season with a 1-2-3 inning. From there, it was a job for the Seminole Saturday starter. In the second, Hubbart dropped out of a run after loading the bases. He finished strong with a key strikeout and a rushing strikeout and seemed to find his footing with another 1-2-3 third. But the second wouldn’t be able to escape the fourth, allowing Carter Putz a first homer and then diving two of the next three batters. Coach Mike Martin Jr. had decided enough was enough and retired Hubbart for Jackson Baumeister.
The pen is struggling again
At the start of the season, the ‘Noles expected to rely heavily on the starting pitcher and their pen. Half of this equation lived up to its billing, but the pen was a big disappointment. Scolaro and Crowell have been big disappointments at this point in the season. The talent and ability are certainly there as often they completely mow down batters, but they are two crucial pen elements that have too much inconsistency for FSU to be the team they want to be. Both pitchers walked a batter in an inning or less of work. In this game Scolaro was a bit unlucky as he gave up two runs, one technically unearned although Greene’s throw from the second would have been quite difficult even if he hadn’t popped the ball, without the ball does leave the infield but he also contributed to this with a walk. Looking back, maybe Davis Hare was taken out early as he hit a batter on an 0-2 count and started the next batter with a ball, but maybe he’s giving up the lead just as well. easily. Baumeister’s work on the day is encouraging and maybe it’s time to put more young pitchers in those high-leverage situations.
To be continued: after losing its first series of the year, the FSU tries to avoid the sweep at the hands of Notre-Dame on Sunday at 1:00 a.m.