San Diego, Calif. Attendance: 75
SAN DIEGO - Baylor baseball suffered another setback in the late stages as California claimed a 5-3 win at the University of San Diego's Fowler Park on Monday afternoon. BU (5-6) trailed 3-1, tied it at 3-3, but then Cal (7-2) pushed two runs across in the eight for the victory.
Baylor went down 1-0 in the second after Nick Halamandaris singled, Chris Paul doubled and two productive outs drove in runs off starter Daniel Castano. But Baylor answered in the third as walks to Hayden Ross, Darryn Sheppard and Lawton Langford led to a wild pitch with Grayson Porter up, scoring Ross. Unfortunately, BU was unable to get more out of the inning as Porter struck out swinging and Price had a fly out to right field.
Cal went up 3-1 in the sixth after an error allowed a run to score. Again, though, Baylor bounced back with a run in the bottom half after a one-out double by Porter and RBI double by Price. However, BU failed to score Price with two chances.
BU kept chipping away and tied it in the seventh at 3-3. The rally started with a one-out HBP by Ross and West Tunnell followed with a single. Langford then delivered a clutch two-out RBI single to give BU new life.
BU's new life didn't last long, though. In the top of the eighth, Paul roped a one-out double and Brenden Farney did the same to put Cal back up. Mitchell Kranson followed with an RBI single to add an insurance run for a 5-3 Cal lead.
Baylor had a great chance in the eighth to tie or possibly go ahead after Aaron Dodson and Matt Menard singled with one out. Adam Toth grounded out on the next play to put both runners in scoring position. But Duncan Wendel's pinch-hit at-bat resulted in a grounder to first base.
Castano took a no-decision after throwing 5.1 innings, allowing three runs on five hits and one walk with two strikeouts. Drew Tolson (0-2) took the loss in relief as he gave up two runs on three hits and walk in two innings. Cal's Ryan Mason (2-0) earned the win in relief, surrendering a run on four hits with one strikeout in two innings. Trevor Hildenberger picked up his third save, throwing 1.1 innings of scoreless ball while giving up a hit with a strikeout.
*Baylor fell to 2-5 in the all-time series against California - all games have been played at neutral sites.
*Baylor fell to 23-25 against current members of the Pac-12 Conference.
*Lawton Langford has reached base in 18 straight games dating back to last season and has a four-game hitting streak. He went 2-for-3 with two walks and an RBI.
*Mitch Price has reached base in eight straight games, tying a career-high streak.
*Matt Menard has a career-long four-game hitting streak after going 1-for-3 with a walk.
*West Tunnell tied a career high with two hits for second time this season.
STAT OF THE GAME
10 - The amount of runners left on base by Baylor.
TWEET OF THE GAME
I can't think of any time a visit to San Diego would be bad, but for the @BaylorBaseball, monsoon rain, delays, and an 0-4 trip might be it.-- David Smoak (@DavidSmoak) March 3, 2014
"We had opportunities early in the game against their freshman starter, who wasn't really sharp early on. They have a veteran club offensively and I think that showed. I like Daniel [Castano] and I think he's going to be really good. He competed extremely well. He has a tremendous upside." - BU head coach Steve Smith
Baylor returns home to face Lamar on Wednesday at 4 p.m. CT before hosting Cal State Fullerton this weekend in a three-game set.