April 22, 2011
WACO, Texas - Max Muncy had a career-high four hits and Logan Verrett picked up his fourth win of the season as Baylor evened the series against Missouri with a 6-3 win on Friday afternoon at Baylor Ballpark.
Baylor (21-19, 7-10 Big 12) got 3.1 innings of one-hit, shutout relief from three pitchers. Max Garner needed just four pitches to retire the only two batters he faced and record his fourth save of the season.
Missouri (15-23, 3-10 Big 12) got a 4-for-4 effort from leadoff hitter Conner Mach, but the rest of the Tigers' lineup was held to five hits and one RBI.
Verrett (4-4) allowed three runs on eight hits with one walk and seven strikeouts in 5.2 innings. Dillon Newman and Brooks Pinckard each worked 1.1 scoreless innings before Garner came on to get the last two outs in the ninth.
"(Verrett) didn't have his best command, but he was able to grit it out," head coach Steve Smith said. "It was a gutty, gritty effort ... he was behind quite a bit in this game today, but he was able to get out of them. That was important for us because we needed every out we could get out of him today."
Missouri starter Rob Zastryzny gave up four hits and his defense committed a pair of errors in the first two innings, and Baylor scored one run in each frame to take a 2-0 lead to the third. Dan Evatt drove in a run in the first with a sacrifice fly and Landis Ware had a RBI single in the second.
The Tigers quickly tied the game with a pair of runs in the second. C.J. Jarvis hit a one-out single, and Mach hit what looked like a routine fly ball to left, but a 30 miles-per-hour wind carried the ball just over the wall for a two-run homer.
Verrett gave up a pair of hits to start the fourth inning, but he struck out the next two batters on called third strikes before Joey Hainsfurther caught Jonah Schmidt trying to steal second base.
The Bears broke the game open with four runs in the fifth. Hainsfurther drew a leadoff walk, Muncy delivered his third single of the game and Evatt hit a two-run double off the batters' eye in straight-away center field. That ended Zastryzny's day, but Josh Ludy and Ware added RBI doubles to give Baylor a 6-2 lead.
Zastryzny (2-4) took the loss after allowing five runs on eight hits in 4.1 innings. Reliever Jeff Emens finished the game, tossing 3.2 innings and allowing one run on six hits.
Verrett's day ended after Ben Turner hit a two-out RBI single in the sixth. With the potential tying run at the plate, Newman induced a groundout to end the inning with Baylor still leading 6-3. The Tigers again brought the tying run to the plate with two runners on in the seventh, but Newman got the next two batters to keep the Bears in front.
Pinckard worked a scoreless eighth, but after he hit Mach with a one-out pitch in the ninth, Garner came out of the bullpen and got a flyout and a strikeout to end the game.
Muncy finished 4-for-5 with one run scored, while Evatt drove in three runs and scored once and Ludy went 2-for-4 with two runs and one RBI.
"(Muncy) has made some big-time adjustments from last year and he is doing a great job," Smith said. "I loved his first at-bat of the game when he was able to put the ball in left field with two strikes. A year ago he couldn't hit a ball that way without it being a fly ball. This year he is just spraying it around and he is a lot tougher of an out."
Baylor goes for its third consecutive series win against Missouri when the teams meet for the series finale at noon on Saturday. The Bears send junior Trent Blank to the mound against junior right-hander Matt Stites.