Friday, May 2, 2014
- by B.B. Branton
It was Senior Night for Baylor Baseball and three soon-to-graduate teenagers made it a memorable night in a 4-3 triumph against visiting McCallie.
With one out in the top of the seventh and runners on first and third, McCallie's Johnny Hennen flied out to senior rightfielder Bryson Crimmins who then took a page from Tinkers-to-Evers-to-Chance and hit senior first baseman Alex Armstrong with the throw who in turn relayed to senior catcher Blake Layne who tagged out Tyson Buchanan trying to score for the game-ending out.
"We played error-free ball tonight which is important and had some timely hits in the sixth to help us re-gain the lead for good," said Baylor coach.
Baylor scored singles runs in the third and fourth for a 2-0 lead only to see McCallie starter Tyler Payne help himself with a 3-run homer in the fifth for a 3-2 lead.
The hosts re-took the lead for good with two more in the sixth and then used the aforementioned double play to secure the win.
Third Game: McCallie hosts Baylor Saturday at noon in the final regular season game for both teams.
Controversial Play: While the game was error free, it was not without controversy
In the Baylor third with a runner on second and two out, Red Raider pitcher Andrew Belcher hit a sharp ground ball to the right of the pitchers' mound which struck the umpire and bounced away from McCallie players allowing Hunter Mercer to score from second with the game's first run.
McCallie coach Greg Payne argued that a batted ball which hits the umpire before it reaches or passes near an infielder other than the pitcher is a dead ball and the runner goes back to his base (unless forced) and the batter is awarded first. The umpires disagreed, let the original play stand and Baylor had its 1-0 lead.
Rule 5.09 F states what coach Payne argued to the umpire.
5.09(f) Comment: If a fair ball touches an umpire working in the infield after
it has bounded
past, or over, the pitcher, it is a dead ball. If a batted ball is deflected by
a fielder in fair territory and
hits a runner or an umpire while still in flight and then caught by an
infielder it shall not be a catch, but the ball
shall remain in play.
Baylor did not score again in the inning.
Baylor 4th: The Red Raiders scored a second run on a passed ball allowing Layne to score from third and a 2-0 lead.
No Hitter and McCallie 5th: Baylor's Belcher took a no-hitter (three walks) into the fifth, but McCallie used Payne's one-out, 3-run home run to take a 3-2 lead.
Baylor 6th: Bryceson Mercer and Crimmins had back-to-back singles, followed by two hit batsman forcing in the tying run. Armstrong's sacrifice fly drove in what proved to be the game-winning run.
McCallie 7th: Buchannon opened with a double, took third on Payne's one out bunt single, but was thrown out to end the game on the aforementioned double play.
Records and Playoffs: Baylor improves to 16-9 overall and 8-7 in the D-II Middle/East Region, while McCallie is 23-8 overall and 11-6 in region ... After Saturday's game, the top three in the Middle/East should be Father Ryan, McCallie and Pope John Paul and all receive first round playoff byes ... Baylor should be fourth in the seven team region and host a first round 2-of-3 game series.
Good McCallie Defense: In the Baylor first, McCallie third baseman Spencer Morgan made a diving catch of Belcher's bunt for the second out of the inning ... in the 6th, catcher Burnett dove to his left to catch a bunt by catcher Layne for the first out of the inning.
Baylor 4, McCallie 3
McCallie 000 030 0 3-5-0
Baylor 001 102 x 4-7-0
Payne and Burnett; Belcher, Culpepper (5) and Layne
WP - Davis Culpepper LP - Tyler Payne
Save - None
HR - Tyler Payne (McCallie)
2B - Tyson Buchannon (McCallie)
Multiple Hits: Bryceson Mercer (Baylor, 2); Tyler Payne (McCallie, 2)
Double Plays: Baylor (2)
Runners Left in Scoring Position: McCallie (2), Baylor (7)
Pitchers: McCallie - Tyler Payne .. Pitches (101) ... IP (6) Hits (7) Runs (4) Earned Runs (3) Hit Batsmen (2) Wild Pitches (2) Ks (6) Walks (4)
Baylor: Andrew Belcher ... Pitches (92) ... IP (4.2) Hits (3) Runs (3) Earned Runs (3) Ks (3) Walks (4)
Davis Culpepper ... Pitches (26) ... IP (2.1) Hits (2) Runs (0) Earned Runs (0) Walks (1) Ks (1)
40 Years: Baylor Coach Gene Etter and his wifem Eddie, were honored before the game with a plaque recognizing their 40 years of leading Baylor baseball.
contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@Comcast.net