March 12, 2010
WACO, Texas - Landis Ware drove in the game-winning run with a RBI triple in the eighth inning, and Brooks Pinckard stranded the bases loaded in the ninth to earn his fifth save, as Baylor knocked off Illinois-Chicago, 9-7, Friday night at Baylor Ballpark.
Ware's triple fell in when Illinois-Chicago (2-9) right fielder Ty Rubio lost the ball in the lights. It was the second time Baylor (9-6) benefitted from a UIC outfielder losing the ball. Joey Hainsfurther had a RBI triple in the third inning on a similar play, but the Flames had John Rosinski in right field that time.
The Flames got on the board in the first against Baylor starter Shawn Tolleson. Steve McGuiggan hit a leadoff triple and came home on Jason Ganek's RBI groundout, but the Bears answered quickly.
UIC starting pitcher Rafael Garcia gave up a single to Pinckard, a double to Hainsfurther, and then loaded the bases by walking Raynor Campbell. Max Muncy then belted a Grand Slam to right field for his fourth homer of the year, giving the Bears a 4-1 lead.
The Flames tied it in the third on Chris Rutta's three-run double, but the Bears again answered in the bottom half of the inning. Pinckard led off with a legged out double, Hainsfurther's triple brought him home, and Campbell extended Baylor's lead to 6-4 with a RBI groundout.
Tolleson settled down and put up zeroes in the next two innings, but Garcia matched his effort, keeping the Bears from adding to their lead by putting up zeroes in the fourth, fifth and sixth.
Tolleson gave up back-to-back singles to start the sixth, ending his night after striking out nine in 5.0 innings. Trent Blank came out of the bullpen and gave up a RBI single to Steven Humble that cut the Baylor lead to 6-5.
Blank rebounded and left the bases loaded when he struck out Ganek on a called third strike, but he ran into trouble again in the seventh.
Rutta reached on a one-out double, and Blank came up lame on his 2-1 pitch to the next batter. He tried to stay in the game, but was clearly in pain on the one practice pitch he threw, so Josh Turley was brought in from the bullpen. Turley walked two of the next three batters before Andy Leonard's two-run single gave UIC a 7-6 lead.
Vick's leadoff double in the seventh ended Garcia's string of 13 batters without allowing a hit, but he was stranded there. Garcia allowed six runs on seven hits in 7.0 innings, but did not factor in the decision.
Kolt Browder (1-0) worked around a walk and recorded two strikeouts in a scoreless eighth inning to get the win. Brad Riegler (0-1), who came on in relief of Garcia to start the eighth, was saddled with the loss after allowing three runs in 1.0 inning of work.
Muncy led off the bottom of the eighth with a double for his third hit of the night, and he advanced to third on a passed ball. One out later, Gregg Glime singled through a drawn-in infield to tie the game, and Ware gave the Bears the lead with his RBI triple.
Vick added an insurance run with his RBI triple, and Pinckard moved from center field to the mound to work the ninth.
Pinckard hit the first batter he faced, and after getting a pair of fielder's choice groundouts, he gave up a single and walked a batter to load the bases. With the tying run on second base, he got McGuiggan to hit a tapper to the mound to end the game.
Muncy finished 3-for-4 with a home run, a double, two runs and four RBI, and Vick Pinckard and Hainsfurther added two hits apiece for the Bears. Rutta led the Flames at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a run and three RBI.
The Bears will try to extend their five-game winning streak when they take on the Flames at 3 p.m. Saturday at Baylor Ballpark.