Feb. 27, 2010
WACO, Texas - One big inning was too much to overcome, as Baylor fell to Texas A&M, 4-2, in the third game of the QTI Baylor Classic, Saturday afternoon at Baylor Ballpark.
Baylor (4-2) starting pitcher Logan Verrett held the Aggies to just one run through the first five innings, despite allowing eight baserunners, but Texas A&M broke through against the sophomore right-hander with three runs in the sixth.
The Aggies got on the board first when they plated a run in the fifth without having a ball leave the infield. Joaquin Hinojosa drew a leadoff walk, and after a sacrifice bunt, advanced to third on Kevin Gonzalez's infield single.
Verrett nearly worked his way out of the jam by getting a foul popout to first base, but Andrew Collazo drove in Hinojosa with a two-out single to second base.
Texas A&M broke the game open with a three-run sixth. Kenny Jackson led off with a single - the fourth time in five innings that the Aggies got the leadoff man on base - and after stealing second base, he came around to score on Caleb Shofner's single through the right side.
Gonzalez added on a two-out, two-run single, giving the Aggies a 4-0 lead. Texas A&M starter Ross Stripling scattered four hits through his first five innings of work, but ran into trouble in the bottom of the sixth.
Logan Vick led off with a single - his second hit of the game - and after Joey Hainsfurther's at-bat was kept alive when Gonzalez dropped a foul ball for an error, Hainsfurther reached base on another error, this time by Jackson.
Max Muncy cut the deficit to 4-1 with a RBI single, chasing Stripling from the game in favor of John Stilson.
Stripling earned the win after allowing two runs - one of which was earned - on six hits in 5.0 innings.
Stilson battled wildness early, walking Dan Evatt to load the bases, and one out later issuing another base on balls to Raynor Campbell. That walk plated Hainsfurther, bringing the Bears within two runs at 4-2.
However, Stilson battled back and struck out each of the next two batters to escape the inning, and he held the Bears hitless over the final four innings to earn his first save of the season.
Verrett needed just six pitches to work his way through a long seventh inning. Andrew Collazo led off with a single, but he was doubled up when he tried to advanced to third base on Brodie Greene's sacrifice bunt.
The play at third led to a heated exchange that ended with Texas A&M associate head coach Matt Deggs being ejected. Verrett got a flyout from Jackson to complete his day after allowing four runs on 11 hits with one walk and seven strikeouts in 7.0 innings. He has taken the loss in both of his starts this season, despite working 7.0 innings in each.
Craig Fritsch held the Aggies scoreless over the last two innings, running the Baylor bullpen's streak of consecutive innings without allowing an earned run to 17.0, but Josh Ludy's one-out walk in the ninth was all the Baylor offense could do against Stilson.
Vick finished the day 2-for-4 with a run scored, while Campbell went 2-for-3 with a walk and one RBI. Collazo led the Aggies at the plate, going 4-for-5 with one RBI.
The Bears take on Western Kentucky at 1 p.m. Sunday at Baylor Ballpark. The Baylor game will be followed by Texas State vs. Texas A&M at 5 p.m. in the finale of the fifth-annual QTI Baylor Classic.