clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Alabama Baseball Swept, Again

Bama drops to 14-22 overall and 2-13 in the SEC.

For the third time in five SEC series, the Crimson Tide was swept in a three game series. This time the culprit was the Texas Aggies. The losses dropped ‘Bama to 2-13 in conference and 14-22 overall, putting them on pace to match the worst SEC season in the teams history at 4-26. Texas A@M improved to 8-7 in league and 26-11 overall. Things will not get any easier for the Tide as they have all ranked teams remaining in SEC play: Mississippi State, LSU, Auburn, Florida and Vanderbilt. There are non conference games left with Alcorn State, Jacksonville State, Samford, and Grambling.

The Tide had chances to win the Thursday and Saturday games, but couldn't come through in critical situations, losing 9-5 on Thursday (after having a 5-4 lead), and 3-2 on Saturday. Friday night was all Aggies in a 8-2 loss.

Thursday-Game One: Lost 9-5

Jake Walters was back from his week long rest to start in the series opener. Brigham Hill was his opponent. Walters was greeted rudely by a lead off triple from Nick Choruby. When Walters tried to pick Choruby off of third he threw the ball away to quickly fall behind 1-0. A walk, two doubles and a single plated three more first inning runs for a quick 4-0 deficit before the Tide ever came to the plate.

Chandler Taylor got one of the runs back in the bottom of the second with a mammoth home run over the 390 mark in centerfield. The long ball was the sophomore’s ninth of the year, tying his total for last year. ‘Bama continued to battle in the third, scoring twice more on singles by Chandler Avant and Cobie Vance and a two run triple from Hunter Alexander.

The Tide took the lead with two more in the fourth when Connor Short and Avant both had RBI singles, to score Taylor, who had walked, and Tanner DeVinny, who had singled. A single, a double, two walks and two errors from ‘Bama gave the Aggies three runs and the lead back, that they never surrendered. Mike Oczypok, then Deacon Medders replaced Walters. A single, a walk, a hit batter and another error led to two more TAM runs in the sixth.

‘Bama only had two base runners from the fifth through the ninth, both in the seventh when Kyle Kaufman singled and Alexander walked. Both were stranded, and the Aggies took game one by a score of 9-5.

Avant and Kaufman both had two hits and Alexander drove in two runs. Walters took the loss in 4.2 innings with seven hits, four walks, one strikeout and seven runs (only four of which were earned.) Medders allowed two runs in three innings, but both were unearned and he struck out five batters. ‘Bama had nine hits, drew two walks, and struck out nine times. TAM had 10 hits, drew seven walks and struck out seven times. Alexander tore ligaments in his finger diving into first base on a pick off attempt, and will probably miss two to three weeks.

Friday-Game Two: Lost 8-2

The Tide fell behind early, could never catch up, and slowly got buried by a score of 8-2 on Friday night. Dylan Durate took the mound. Once again, the Aggies started quick with Nick Choruby singling and scoring to lead off the game. TAM put the game away in the third with four runs, highlighted by a three run home run from Cole Bedford.

Durate gave up two more runs in the fifth inning before being relieved by Zac Rogers. ‘Bama finally got on the board in the sixth when Walker McCleney singled, stole second and advanced to third on an overthrow. Chandler Avant plated the run with a sacrifice fly to right field. Choruby collected his third hit of the game in the top of the eighth and scored on a Blake Kopetsky double. Cobie Vance doubled in Avant in the eighth for the final run of the game in a 8-2 Alabama loss.

Alabama had five hits, walked three times and struck out nine times. Texas A@M had 15 hits, drew four walks and struck out three times, while stranding nine base runners. Durate fell to 2-3 on the year, allowing nine hits and seven earned runs in 4.1 innings. Corbin Martin raised his mark to 4-2 with his seven outstanding innings for the Aggies.

Saturday-Game Three: Lost 3-2

Nick Eicholtz, feeling fully healthy for the first time all year, channeled the 2016 Eicholtz that finished third in the SEC in ERA on Saturday. He matched up with Stephen Kolek in a classic pitching match, in what was a fantastic baseball game, if you didn't care who won. The pitching was outstanding, the defense was sterling and the game went down to the last pitch.

The Tide struck first for a change, with a first inning run. Cobie Vance singled and scored on a Chandler Taylor double to the opposite field. Meanwhile, Eicholtz only allowed a first inning double, and walked four with six strikeouts in six outstanding innings. The senior right hander threw 109 pitches, and did not allow a run in his best outing of the year.

‘Bama continually stranded runners on base, and more importantly in scoring position, throughout the game. The Crimson Tide had two hits in the second, third, and fifth innings, but could not push a run across.

Garrett Suchey, a mainstay out of the pen for the Tide this year, replaced Eicholtz in the seventh. After two quick outs a single was followed by a questionable walk on a 3-2 pitch to Austin Homan. Ninth place hitter George Janca followed and deposited an 2-0 pitch over the left field wall for a three run home run.

The Tide had a chance in the eighth when Cody Henry was hit by a pitch and Connor Short singled, but both were stranded. ‘Bama showed some fight in the bottom of the ninth, while trailing 3-1. Chandler Avant stroked a one out double. With two outs Vance had a fabulous at bat, lining a 3-2 pitch for a single after nine pitches. Avant scored from third base on a passed ball during Vance’s at bat. Chandler Taylor stepped in as the potential winning run. Taylor also battled, and hit a long drive out of the park, into the football facility, that was foul by about 25 feet. He then worked a nine pitch walk to put the winning run on base. Cody Henry followed but struck out on four pitches to end the game.

‘Bama out hit the Aggies 11-5 in the game, but only drew one walk while striking out nine times. TAM drew six walks and struck out nine times. The Tide stranded 12 runners, and the Aggies left six on base. Suchey dropped to 2-5 with the loss. Vance had a 4-5 day with a run scored. Seven other players had one hit each, as every player but Henry had a hit in the game.

Who Did What

  • Cobie Vance 7-13
  • Chandler Avant 4-11
  • Chandler Taylor 3-10, double, home run, two RBI
  • Nick Eicholtz 6 IP, 1 hit, 6 strikeouts, 4 walks

There isn't much to say. As stated before, when the starters go deep into the game, the team will have a chance. Eicholtz’s start was the only one this weekend that qualified in that vein, however the offense couldn't give him the run support he needed. The team has found pretty much every way possible to lose this season, and things are only going to get tougher with the upcoming series.

What’s Next?

A Tuesday night home game with Alcorn State at 6 p.m. CT, followed by a road trip to Starkville to take on the hot Bulldogs of Mississippi State in another Thursday-Friday-Saturday series. Game times are 6 p.m on Thursday, 6:30 p.m on Friday and 2 p.m on Saturday.

Bama Baseball Fever, ... well

follow @rogerpatmyers on twitter for live, in game updates