June 6, 2010
Final Box Score (PDF) | Press Conference Video | Quotes
FORT WORTH, Texas – The Arizona baseball team saw its postseason run come to an end on Sunday as the No. 2 seed Baylor Bears handed the Wildcats a 4-2 loss in an elimination game in the Fort Worth Regional at Lupton Stadium.
Baylor (36-23), the designated visiting team, scored a run in the top of the seventh to tie the game at 2-2 without tallying a base hit. In the eighth, the Bears plated two runs on just one hit to take a 4-2 lead.
Willie Kempf, who improved to 9-1 on the season, worked into the ninth inning, throwing eight plus innings for the Bears as he allowed just two runs – both in the second inning. Brooks Pinkard came on with a runner on base and no outs in the ninth to earn his 12th save of the season as he retired all three batters he faced.
Arizona (34-24) received a valiant effort out of freshman Tyler Hale, who made his first career start. A native of Abilene, Texas, Hale turned in a career-high 7.0 innings of work as he allowed just two runs on three hits. He walked five, but tallied a career-best seven strikeouts.
Unfortunately for Hale, one of his strikeouts allowed the Bears to tie the game. With two outs and a runner on third, Hale was able to get Raynor Campbell to chase a third strike in the dirt. But, the ball richocheted off catcher Jett Bandy and into the Baylor dugout on the first base side, which allowed Logan Vick to score from third.
The Bears added two more runs in the eighth to take their first lead of the game. Stephen Manthei hit the first batter he faced, Gregg Glime. A sacrifice bunt moved Chris Slater, who pinch ran for Glime, to second base. Manthei then issued an intentional walk to Max Muncy that put runners on first and second with one out.
Manthei induced a grounder off the bat of designated hitter Josh Turley, but shortstop Alex Mejia committed an error that loaded the bases. A sacrifice fly by Landis Ware – his second of the game – scored Slater. Vick then delivered an RBI single off releiver Bryce Bandilla that brought home a second run, handing the Bears the 4-2 lead.
The Wildcats were turned away in order in the eighth, but put their leadoff batter on in the ninth. Josh Garcia singled to left field off Kempf, before Pinckard, the starting centerfielder for the Bears, was called on to close out the game. Pinckard got a groundout, a strikeout and a line out to end the game.
Kempf got off to a rough start as the Wildcats struck first in the second inning. Cole Frenzel and Robert Refsnyder opened the inning with singles, and Seth Mejias-Brean advanced them to second and third respectively with a sacrifice bunt. Mejia then lined a double to left field, plating both runners to give the Wildcats a 2-0 lead.
Arizona threatened to score in the bottom of the first. Jett Bandy doubled with two outs and moved to third on a sharp single up the middle by Steve Selsky. But Josh Garcia struck out to end the inning, stranding a pair of runners.
The Wildcats finish their season with a 34-24 record. The berth in the Fort Worth Regional was the program’s sixth postseason appearance in the last eight years.