April 23, 2006
Tallahassee, FL – The Seminoles struggles of late continued Sunday as the team lost both ends of a doubleheader to Georgia Tech by scores of 10-4 and 8-7. With the series sweep, the eight-ranked Yellow Jackets became the first ACC team to ever sweep three straight series from the Seminoles. Fifth-ranked FSU has lost six of it last seven games and now stands at 33-10 and 13-8 in the ACC. FSU is still within percentage points of the top spot in the Atlantic Division though trailing Clemson (12-6) and Wake Forest (14-7).
“We have to take whatever positives there are away from this series,” said senior pitcher Matt DiBlasi. “We have to keep battling. After losing that first game we kept fighting in game two. We kept coming back. We put ourselves in a situation to win it. We just have to go out and get it done. We have to do the same things we were doing that got us to the point before we started to struggle.”
“Sometimes you go through that in baseball,” said FSU Head Coach Mike Martin of the team’s five game losing streak. “Our young men played their hearts out. We had a chance in the second game. Just give Georgia Tech a lot of credit. They got it done.”
The Yellow Jackets scored eight or more runs in all three games of the series and FSU has now allowed eight or more runs in four straight games. Coming into the week, the Seminoles had only allowed that many runs in a game three times in 39 contests. The Yellow Jackets out hit FSU 41-29 and outscored the Seminoles 33-19 on the weekend.
“Georgia Tech just did a great job hitting,” said Martin. “They didn’t chase pitches. They made us throw the ball over the plate. That was probably the most hits we have give up in a three-game series that I can remember. We were totally pounded by that ball club. They did a very good job.”
GAME ONE RECAP
Seminole senior Tyler Chambliss (9-2) started game one of the doubleheader and was saddled with just his second loss of the year. The junior went six innings and gave up seven runs, only four of which were earned. FSU committed a season-high four errors in the loss and despite being out hit only 10-9, the Seminoles came out on the short end of a 10-4 game.
FSU got its first hit off Tech starter Jared Hyatt in the second inning when Posey singled through the right side. Tony Thomas, Jr. then drew a walk but a double play ended the Seminole threat.
After getting the first out of the third, the Yellow Jackets looked to break on top with back-to-back singles off Chambliss. The third hit of the game brought a run home and an error on the throw into the infield allowed the runner to get all the way to third. With Yellow Jackets on the corners, a sac fly brought in the second Tech run of the inning.
Ryan Strauss opened the bottom of the third with a single and then moved up a base on a Danny Diaz sacrifice bunt. Shane Robinson followed with a walk but Hyatt got out number two on a fly ball to center. Dennis Guinn then delivered a two-out RBI single cutting the lead in half.
Buster Posey tied the game up in the fourth as he lined a ball out of the park over the wall in left field. It was the fourth homer of the year for the freshman. Hyatt continued to struggle as he walked back-to-back batters before getting the second out of the inning. Robinson then came up and delivered a two-out RBI single putting FSU in the lead for the first time in the game.
Chambliss opened the fifth by giving up a hit and issuing a walk to put two Yellow Jackets on base with nobody out. An error on a sac bunt loaded the bases up and then Tech tied the game on a ground out. Chambliss got the second out on another grounder to first but Matt Wieters’ second double of the game put Tech back in front 5-3.
The Jackets started the sixth in similar fashion as they did in the fifth with a walk and a base hit. A fielder’s choice and a hit batter loaded the bases up once again for Georgia Tech. A Michael Fisher single scored another run as the bases remained loaded for Danny Payne who had the grand slam in the first game of the series. The slugging leadoff hitter couldn’t get a run across the plate this time as FSU forced the runner out at home for the second out. Chambliss then walked in the seventh Georgia Tech run as the bases remained juiced before Chambliss fanned the final batter to end the top of the sixth.
Florida State cut into the lead thanks to a two-out walk by Robinson and then an error on a single by Jack Rye. The left fielder let the ball get past him allowing Robinson to come home making it a 7-4 game.
Tech went back to work in the top of the seventh as a fielding error opened the door for three unearned runs as the Yellow Jackets scored in double digits for the second game in the series.
GAME TWO RECAP
The second game of the day was a see-saw battle but FSU could never seem to make up enough ground after an early 4-2 lead. Georgia Tech scored runs in five of the first six innings but FSU continually cut the lead to one run only to see the Jackets build upon their lead in the top of the next inning.
Georgia Tech pounded out 18 hits, the most allowed by FSU since March 10, 2005, off five different pitchers. Reliever Barret Browning (6-2) took the loss while Tech starter David Duncan (5-1) picked up the win.
Freshman Jimmy Marshall struggled in the beginning of his first collegiate start. The Tallahassee native gave up five hits and a walk in the first two innings of game two but only allowed one run to come around.
An error and a single opened the door for FSU in the second as Mark Gildea doubled down the right field line plating Ryan McArdle. A groundout brought Thomas home putting FSU in front 2-1. Another error on a ball to third put Florida State in front 3-1.
The Jackets came back and cut the lead to 3-2 with a lead-off double and a sacrifice fly.
Guinn got the run back in a hurry in the bottom of the third. The sophomore hit his team-leading 10th homer of the season equaling the total of the 2005 team leaders in that category from a 73-game season.
Two more base hits put runners on the corners for Georgia Tech and ended Marshall’s first career start bringing Browning into the game. The leftie walked the first hitter he faced to load the bases with just one away. Steven Blackwood then tied the game on a base hit to center field making it 4-4.
In the fifth Tech got a runner on via a hit by a pitch and a single to put Yellow Jackets on first and second. A double play moved Browning closer to getting out of the inning but left a runner on third. A high chopper over the mound brought the run home as the Jackets went back in front 5-4. Two more hits brought home the sixth run of the game and the second of the inning with two away.
The Seminoles fought back in the fifth with back-to-back singles putting runners on the corners. Guinn drove home his 54th run of the season on a sac fly making it a one-run game at 6-5.
The lead moved back out to two runs as Tech recorded back-to-back two-out doubles off reliever Matt DiBlasi to go up 7-5.
Thomas opened the sixth with a base hit and then a steal and error put the sophomore on third base. Ryne Malone came off the bench to single home Thomas once again bringing FSU within a run. A walk to Diaz put two runners on base and then reliever Brad Rulon walked Robinson to load the bases but it took reliever Lee Hyde just one pitch to end the threat.
After Hyde got the first batter in the seventh, the reliever walked the next two Seminoles to put the tying run in scoring position. New pitcher John Goodman got out of the inning on one pitch as well as a double play ended the potential FSU threat.
A single and back-to-back walks loaded the bases for Georgia Tech in the eighth as the Jackets looked for insurance runs. A single brought in another Tech run making it 8-6 before closer Luke Tucker recorded the second out on a strikeout and then ended the inning on a fly ball as Tech left the bases juiced.
Tommy Oravetz led off the bottom of the eighth with his seventh hit by pitch of the year. Malone followed with a base hit before Tech closer Matt Wieters struck out the next batter for the first out of the inning. Georgia Tech’s fourth error of the day loaded the bases up and then FSU got back within one run on a ground out. With two away and the tying run on third base Wieters got FSU’s leading HR hitter in Guinn to fly out to end the eighth.
Posey opened the bottom of the ninth with a single up the middle and was moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt but FSU could not get the tying run across the plate versus the Tech closer as he picked up his fourth save.
The Seminoles will take the week of from game action due to final exams. Florida State returns to the Mike Martin Field Friday, April 28 at 7:00 p.m. versus Savannah State. Every Seminole baseball game will be carried live on WFLA and on Seminoles.com where broadcasts are free of charge. Game Tracker will also be available for every FSU game in 2006.