Toledo Blanks Central Michigan in MAC Series Opener, 11-0
TOLEDO, OH - Senior LHP Kyle Shaw worked a three-hit jewel and paced Toledo to an 11-0 victory against Central Michigan on Saturday in its Mid-American Conference series opener at Scott Park. With the blanking, the Rockets improve to 13-23 overall, 5-8 in the league.
Shaw (4-5) went the distance for the third time in his UT career and faced only 33 batters in earning his team-best fourth triumph of the 2013 campaign. The LaGrange, OH native kept the Chippewas hitters off-balance all afternoon and finished with a career-high nine strikeouts and no walks. He retired the opposition in order on five occasions and the most batters he faced in an inning was six in the second frame.
Offensively, the Rockets pounded out 11 hits against a trio of CMU hurlers, including senior CF Ben Hammer (2-for-3, 2 RS, 2 RBI), junior LF Tyler Grogg (2-for-4, 2 RS, RBI), junior RF Jacob North (2-for-3, RS, 2 RBI) and freshman 2B Deion Tansel (2-for-4, 3 RS) with two hits each.
UT plated runs in seven different innings to post its second shutout of the spring and in the process snapped a five-game losing skid.
The Chippewas’ (16-20, 5-8 MAC) RHP Jordan Foley was tagged with the loss, allowing seven runs (six earned) on eight hits with two strikeouts in 4.0 innings. Foley (6-3) came into today’s game leading the MAC with a 1.02 ERA in 61.2 frames.
The Rockets got off to a great start, plating two runs in their opening at-bat. The home team took advantage of a sacrifice fly by Hammer and a RBI groundout by senior 1B Matt Delewski (1-for-4, 2 RS, 2 RBI) to assume a lead they would not relinquish.
Central Michigan had a golden opportunity to cut into the deficit in the second frame and had the bases loaded with only one out, but UT’s Shaw recorded back-to-back punchouts to keep it a two-run difference.
Toledo used the momentum from the previous half inning and received a two-out RBI single by Grogg to push its margin to 3-0.
UT continued to pour it on offensively in the third frame and added two tallies to make it a five-run difference. The Rockets scored their first run on a CMU infield throwing error with a runner on second base and North followed with a two-out RBI double.
Toledo was relentless at the dish and plated two more runs in the fourth inning to make the score 7-0. UT registered one of the runs on another CMU miscue and the other on a RBI single by Delewski to end the afternoon for CMU’s Foley.
The Rockets then finished off the scoring with one run each in the fifth and sixth innings and two more in the eighth to make the final tally 11-0. The 2012 MAC West Division champions took advantage of another Central Michigan error in the fifth, a sacrifice fly by Hammer in the sixth and four-consecutive hit batters by CMU RHP Joe Ocho in the eighth to equal its season high in runs.
The division rivals will wrap up their three-game series tomorrow with a doubleheader beginning at 12:05 p.m. at Scott Park. Junior RHP Cameron Palmer and junior LHP Ryan Wilkinson are expected to start on the mound for the Rockets against the Chippewas on Sunday.
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