April 7, 2009
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - It was a rare #1 vs. #1 match-up Tuesday night in Fayetteville, Arkansas, as both the Sun Devils and the Arkansas Razorbacks were atop at least one college baseball poll this week. Arizona State took an early lead, but was done in by a big seventh inning by the Razorbacks, as they took out the Devils 7-3 in front of 8,342 fans at Baum Stadium. The loss drops ASU to 23-6 on the year.
Seth Blair pitched well, lasting 6.1 and allowing only three runs on three hits, but he ran into trouble in the bottom of the seventh and the ASU bullpen could not bail him out of it. Blair finished with a no decision. Kole Calhoun was tagged with the loss, his first decision of the year. Calhoun did not record an out, allowing three runs, one earned, on one hit. Jason Franzblau, Jeeter Ishida and Kyle Brule also pitched for Arizona State.
The Sun Devils used some trickery to get on the scoreboard first in the top of the third. With two out, ASU had Zack MacPhee at third with Raoul Torrez at the plate. MacPhee broke from third on a 1-1 pitch, easily stealing home to make it 1-0 Devils. Kole Calhoun would single home Carlos Ramirez from second in the fourth to make it 2-0. The Hogs would push one across in the fourth off of Blair to cut the lead to 2-1. Jacob House singled to center to score Andy Wilkins, who led off the inning with a double
Arizona State would get that run back in the sixth when Carlos Ramirez blasted his 11th homer of the season to left center, putting ASU up 3-1. The Razorbacks would strike in the seventh off of Seth Blair, Kole Calhoun and Jason Franzblau, taking a 6-3 lead. Blair retired the first batter of the inning, then walked the next hitter and gave up a single. Calhoun would come in and give up an RBI bloop single to make it 3-2, then hit a batter to load the bases. The next batter hit a ground ball to short which Drew Maggi couldn't handle, allowing the tying run to score. That would end the night for Calhoun, who gave way to Franzblau. Andrew Darr would greet Franzblau with an RBI single to left putting the Razorbacks up 4-3. Scott Lyons would then shoot a pinch hit single to right center to bring two more home. Both of those runs would be unearned, but the damage was done as Arkansas went to the eighth up 6-3. They would add a run in the eighth off of Ishida to make it 7-3.
The Sun Devils would load the bases in the ninth, but Stephen Richards was able to pitch out of the jam, earning his fifth save of the year. Sam Murphy (1-0) picked up the win, thanks to his 2.1 innings where he allowed only one run on two hits.
Seven Sun Devils collected hits, led by Zack MacPhee, who went 1-1 with a double, three walks and the steal of home.
The Devils and the Razorbacks will close out the two-game set tomorrow. First pitch is scheduled for 4:35 Arizona time from Baum Stadium.