April 22, 2005 - by
The One That Got Away! No. 5 UM Scores Five In The Eighth To Down No. 14 FSU 5-3

April 22, 2005

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    Coral Gables, FL – The 14th-ranked Florida State baseball team came just six outs away from doing what no other team in college baseball has been able to do in the last two years. The Seminoles took a 3-0 led on UM ace Cesar Carillo and threatened to end his winning streak at 21 games before a disastrous eighth inning allowed No. 5 Miami to come from behind and down FSU 5-3. The Canes (30-9-1, 14-4-1) scored five runs on just one hit in the eighth. The Seminoles (34-12. 9-7) hit two hit batters, issued three walks and committed an error in the frame.

    “It is very disappointing to play like we did in that eighth inning,” said FSU head coach Mike Martin. “You have to give Miami credit because they took advantage of every mistake we made in that inning. They took advantage of mistakes we made and parlayed it into a big inning. Give them the credit.”

    Florida State seemed like it was on its way to its second straight upset of a top five team through seven innings. Starter Mark Sauls and reliever Kevin Lynch pitched 6 1/3 scoreless innings marking the first time this year UM had been held without a run at home for more than six innings. The Seminoles had already knocked Carillo out of the game, which was the first time in three tries the Miami mid-season All-American had left an FSU/UM game trailing but FSU couldn’t get out of the eighth.

    “We know Carillo is one of the premier pitchers in college baseball,” said Martin. “We never thought we had the game locked up. You know you have to play all 27 outs.”

    It was outs 21-24 that proved hard to get for the Seminoles. FSU’s third pitcher of the night Brian Chambers opened the bottom of the eighth by getting ahead of Jon Jay before hitting the Hurricanes clean-up hitter. Chambers then plunked his second straight batter putting two runners on with nobody out. It was the first real threat by Miami since the fourth inning. A double steal, without the benefit of a throw, took off the possible sacrifice as both runners moved into scoring position. When Chambers went 3-1 on the next batter, Martin wasted no time in calling for closer Tyler Chambliss (5-3) who was tied for the NCAA saves lead after Tuesday night’s 11th save versus Florida. Chambliss’ first pitch was a ball loading the bases. He then went 2-0 on the next Cane before throwing his first strike of the game. Chambliss then got Roger Tomas swinging for the first out. The Seminoles came inches away from getting out of the jam on what looked to be a double play. The ball was hit to Ryne Jernigan but the runner apparently beat the freshman to the bag at second before throwing out the runner at first base, which allowed Miami’s first run of the game to score. The play proved costly as the next hitter singled through the right side driving in both runners and tying the game at 3-3. The potential lead run then moved into scoring position on a wild pitch as Chambliss went on to walk Danny Figueroa. A Jernigan error then completed the Miami comeback as Paco Figueroa’s shot to short went under the freshman’s glove allowing both runs to score on the two base error. An intentional walk put Ryan Braun on and brought Matt DiBlasi into the game who ended the nightmare inning.

    Things couldn’t have gone better for FSU up until that point. Florida State went on the attack in the third in a 0-0 game as Shane Robinson led off the inning getting on base for a second time as he was hit by a Carillo pitch. Ryne Malone, who earlier in his at bat yanked one just foul down the right field line, hit his 15th double of the season bringing Robinson home and putting FSU up 1-0. It was the sophomore’s ninth double in the last 11 games. Gibbs Chapman then sacrificed Malone to third and reached safely on a throwing error putting runners on the corners with nobody out. Aaron Cheesman then fought back from a 0-2 count to draw a walk and load the bases as Carillo continued to look for the first out. Jack Rye hit an infield single between first and second scoring the second run and keeping the bases loaded. Carillo got the first out of the inning on a K and the second on a Danny Wardell sac fly adding to the FSU lead before getting out of the jam trailing 3-0.

    The Canes put a base runner on in the bottom of the third as they tried to cut into the 3-0 lead but Ryan Braun was gunned down by Cheesman trying to swipe second. It was the 26th caught stealing of the year for Cheesman and only the fifth time Braun has been thrown out in 24 attempts. Cheesman had thrown out 12 of the last 26 runners attempting to steal on him at that point in the game.

    The Seminoles got called for their second interference of the game in the fourth. After Tony Thomas, Jr. was hit by a pitch, Robinson beat out the back end of a double play but was ruled out due to Thomas being called for interfering with the throw from second to first. He was called for making contact above the knees of second baseman Walter Diaz.

    Sauls got into a two-out jam in the fourth. A lead-off single was followed by a fielder’s choice getting the runner at second and then a ground out moved the runner into scoring position. An error kept the inning alive putting Canes on the corners before a walk loaded the bases as the top of the UM order came to the plate. That brought in bases loaded specialist Lynch. In his previous seven appearances with the bases loaded Lynch had not allowed a run to score on six occasions and the senior made it seven with a strikeout to end the inning leaving the bases full.

    Danny Wardell and Josh Spivey each recorded one out singles in the sixth to put runners on first and second versus Carillo. A Thomas sac moved both runners into scoring position with two away but FSU was unable to capitalize. Robinson came inches away from breaking the game open as he laced a shot into the gap in right center that was slicing away from Paco Figueroa who came up with the catch on the warning track.

    Danny Valencia opened the bottom of the sixth with a single to center field as the Canes tried to end the shutout and get back into the game but the Canes could get nothing going against Lynch. The senior retired the side on a pop out, a fielder’s choice and a strikeout.

    Miami got a one-out double from Danny Figueroa in the seventh before athletic trainer Jerry Hilker visited with Lynch on the mound an eventually pulled him from the game due to soreness. That brought Chambers into the game and he got out of the seventh as UM’s longest home scoreless streak of the season continued.

    FSU looked to get an insurance run off Wardell’s one-out double down the left field line off new pitcher Danny Gil (2-3). Spivey then drew a walk and was replaced at first by pinch runner Ryan Strauss marking his first appearance of the year on the bases. Gil got the second out of the inning on a K and then got out of the jam on a fly out to center.

    After UM made its eighth inning comeback, Chapman drew a one out walk bringing the potential tying run to the plate and Cheesman kept the Seminoles’ hopes alive with a single into shallow center. Closer Chris Perez (3), who opened the ninth, got pinch hitter Brant Peacher swinging to move the Canes an out away from dashing the Seminoles hopes of an upset. The closer finished the game off with a foul out to the catcher.

    Florida State will continue its series in Coral Gables, FL with Miami Saturday night at 7:00 p.m. The game will be carried live on Sun Sports. Game Tracker will be available for all this year’s games along with Steve Melewski’s live radio broadcast available on WFLA locally and on the Internet at seminoles.com.

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