March 26, 2006
Tallahassee, FL – Three games and 34 runs after the Florida State/Duke series began Friday night, the No. 1 Seminole baseball team completed its series sweep of the Blue Devils with an emphatic 15-5 victory Sunday. Florida State (25-2, 8-1) pounded out a season high 19 hits in winning their 30th straight game at Dick Howser Stadium. Seventeen Seminoles got an at bat in the game, 12 recorded hits and seven had RBIs.
The Seminoles broke out to a six run lead in the bottom of the first inning and never looked back as the team improved to 19-1 in games where either team scores a run in the game’s first frame. Michael Hyde (5-0) picked up the victory over Duke (8-21, 1-8) as the Seminole starters improved their record to 24-0 on the season.
“We had some good at bats today,” said FSU Head Coach Mike Martin. “I think the first inning was their undoing. We got two extra outs and took full advantage of it scoring six runs. That is kind of a big mountain to climb. I am just very pleased with the way we are playing right now.”
The Seminole offense had another good day as the team scored 15 or more runs in a game for the fourth time this season and double digit runs in a game for 11th time. The Seminoles are now averaging over nine runs scored per game.
“The offense has been doing this all year no matter who steps on the mound,” said Seminole first baseman Dennis Guinn. “We are scoring runs, 1-9 everyone is getting on base and the guys behind them are moving them up and getting RBIs. All year it has been like this.”
Guinn’s production has been one of the biggest boosts for the offense this year. The sophomore hit another homerun Sunday as he leads the team with eight. He is also the only Seminole with 40 RBIs this season as he knocked in three versus Duke in the finale to raise his total to 41 on the year. He is hitting .388 and has a team-best .757 slugging percentage.
“I am getting more comfortable everyday,” said Guinn of his performance. “Last year I didn’t play that much and it is kind of tough to get out there and just jump into a game. This year I am getting more comfortable every at bat and every inning. It feels really good.”
Guinn wasn’t the only star at the plate for the Seminoles Sunday. Danny Diaz returned to the starting line-up behind the plate and tied a career-high with three RBIs. Travis Anderson recorded a career-high three RBIs as well as he hit the first homer of his FSU career. Ryne Malone went yard also as FSU hit three homeruns in a game for the fourth time this season. Last year FSU had three or more homers in a game five times in 73 games.
Hyde got off to a little bit of rocky start early on but bounced back and settled down in picking up the win. The junior pitched five innings gave up six hits and four runs. He walked two batters and fanned four. Four relievers each worked an inning and combined to allow just one run while fanning six and issuing just one walk.
“Michael Hyde struggled a little bit early but I was very pleased with the way he got control of the ballgame,” said Martin. “He started throwing his change-up and curveball to location and did a very good job settling down.”
Duke opened the game defensively with a two-base error on a deep fly ball hit by Shane Robinson. The All-American, who went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI, moved to third on a fly out and Guinn then got the scoreboard working early as he hammered his team-leading eighth homer of the season over the left field wall. The two-run bomb gave Guinn a team high 40 RBIs at that point.
“It was a 2-0 count and I didn’t want to try and do too much with it,” said Guinn of the homerun. “I tried to make him pay for leaving a pitch up.”
Duke starter Jonathan Anderson (1-3) got the second out of the inning before Posey knocked a double the bounced off the bag at second base. Anderson walked Thomas and then another error loaded the bases. Strauss cashed in on the error as he doubled home two more runs putting FSU up 4-0. Danny Diaz then continued to pile the runs on as he plated two more with a single through the left side of the infield.
The Blue Devils looked to answer in the top of the second as Hyde loaded the bases with just one away on two hits and a walk. A base hit got Duke on the board with its first run of the game. Hyde got the next out on a fly ball but he walked the next batter on four straight pitches to make it a 6-2 game.
Posey came through with his second double of the game in the second inning, this one brought home a run as the FSU lead grew to 7-2.
As they have done all weekend, the Blue Devils battled back once again recording back-to-back doubles making it a 7-3 game. A ground out drove in another Duke run making the score 7-4 before Hyde got out of the third.
Diaz delivered another RBI in the bottom of the inning as he singled in Strauss who was running on the pitch from second. Robinson then came up with a double ripped down the left field line plating Diaz as the Seminoles plated their ninth run.
FSU went back on the attack in the fifth as a Robinson hit and steal on top of Duke’s third error of the game put runners on the corners. Guinn then drove in another run on a sac fly as the Seminoles scored 10 runs for the 11th time this season. The runs continued to come for FSU as Malone went yard off the circus tent beyond the right field screen plating runs number 11 an 12.
After the Seminole staff held Duke off the scoreboard for three straight innings, the Blue Devils got a run back in the seventh courtesy of a sacrifice fly making it a 12-5 game. A Jimmy Gallagher double put two more runners in scoring position with two away but Brent Marsh closed the door on the potential rally.
Sean Stuyverson led off the seventh with the first base hit of his career and then another first for an FSU player as Anderson went yard for his first FSU homer making the score 15-5 as FSU tied a season high for hits with 17.
Florida State will go after its 31st straight home win this Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. versus North Florida. The Osprey came into the game 15-12 and they lead the A-Sun in conference victories with eight. Game Tracker will be available for every game this season along with a live radio broadcasts available on WFLA locally and free on the Internet at seminoles.com.