Video: Derek Stamberger
With the calendar officially flipping to March last Friday, Miami baseball decided it was time for a little spring cleaning.
The RedHawks (7-3) got out the brooms and swept the Oakland Golden Grizzlies (0-10) in their first three-game home series at Hayden Park this season. The Miami offense exploded for double-digit run totals in each of the first two games, before the RedHawks relied on a solid pitching effort in the final contest of the weekend.
There was originally supposed to be one game each on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, but forecasted snow for the final day of the weekend prompted the teams to play a doubleheader on Friday.
The rescheduling didn’t slow down the RedHawks. They won 10-2 and 14-3 on Friday, and then completed the sweep with a 5-3 victory on Saturday afternoon.
Game One: The RedHawks can mash
Carrying their big bats over from the previous weekend when they put up double-digit run totals twice at Murray State, the RedHawks did it again to start out the weekend against Oakland.
They forced nine earned runs onto Golden Grizzly pitchers, including four batted in by junior catcher Cal Elvers.
Elvers went 2-for-3 at the plate, hitting a two-run triple, an RBI single and a sacrifice fly to bring in nearly half of Miami’s tallies.
Overall, the team recorded 13 hits and one walk while striking out six times. That’s a hard game to top…
Game Two: The RedHawks can mash Part Two
…except Miami outdid itself in the second game of the Friday doubleheader.
The team plated 14 runs on 14 hits and seven walks. A few more swings and misses were the only negative, as they struck out nine times.
Senior outfielder Mackay Williams drove in a series-high five runs, while his teammate, redshirt junior outfielder Kyle Winkler, added three RBIs of his own.
At the end of the day, MU head coach Danny Hayden was pleased with his team’s hitting.
“There were obviously some big innings in there, where I thought we did a lot of things right offensively,” Hayden said. “There weren’t too many innings where I felt like our at-bats were sloppy or there were things we were doing poorly offensively. On the day, for 18 innings, I thought it was a pretty good offensive day.”
Game Three: Three pitchers go multiple innings and get the job done
The Miami pitching staff had a solid weekend, surrendering just eight runs in three games. Yet, that effort on the mound was overshadowed by the offensive fireworks on Friday.
On Saturday, the offense didn’t dry up, but it allowed the pitchers to shine.
Senior starter Jack Corbell went three innings and allowed one run. From there, the bullpen locked Oakland down.
Senior Shane Smith and freshman Sam Bachman threw a combined six innings of two-run baseball.
“Our bullpen is deep enough that, if we can get five great innings out of our starter, we don’t need a ton more than that,” Hayden said.
After giving up five runs in 2.2 innings over his first two 2019 appearances, Smith bounced back on Saturday. He pitched four innings and didn’t allow a run.
Miami continues its homestand with another weekend series, this time a four-game set with the Youngstown State Penguins.