Sunday, March 30, 2008

Buckeyes Salvage Series Split

J.B. Shuck struck out a career-high 13 batters in 8.0 innings while Tony Kennedy and Zach Hurley each drove in runs to fuel Ohio State to a 2-0 victory in the series finale vs. Penn State (box score). The Buckeyes won the bookends of the series, also winning 15-0 in the opener Friday before the Nittany Lions responded to sweep the Saturday doubleheader. The win was the 200th in the 12-year history of Bill Davis Stadium (200-88, .694).

Shuck, who participated in a B9 Q&A this week, allowed four hits, but walked five of the 31 batters he faced to improve to 4-1 on the season. The Ohio State junior equaled his win total from last season when he finished 4-4. He was 8-5 as a freshman. Eric Best came on for Shuck and retired all three batters he faced to earn his second save of the season.

With the way the bullpen has been at times this season, it was great to see Shuck stay in the game so long. But with the way he was pitching, he deserved the benefit of the doubt. His last two strikeouts came in the seventh inning and then after he allowed a lead-off single in the eighth, he got a fly out and double play to end the threat.

Ohio State struck first in this classic pitchers' duel with a run in the fifth. Tony Kennedy turned a lead-off walk by Dan Burkhart into a 1-0 lead. Burkhart went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Tyler Engle and went to third on a ground out by Ryan Dew. Zach Hurley tripled in the second run in the sixth inning. Cory Rupert reached on a two-out throwing error by PSU shortstop Lou Picconi so the run was unearned.

Ryan Stobart pitched a complete game for the Nittany Lions allowing both runs on six hits. He struck out five and walked three. Penn State fell to 7-14 overall and 2-2 in the Big Ten.

Click here for the Penn State recap and here for recap.

Ohio State is 12-8 overall and 2-2 in conference play and will welcome Toledo Wednesday for a 6:35 p.m. first pitch. It is 'Wing-Man' Wednesday and all box seats are buy one get one free. Minnesota visits Bill Davis Stadium next weekend. Hopefully the crowds will start to show up.


BaseballBucks33 said...

Great win today..Much needed pitching performance.

JB was the man today.Nice pitchers dual.JB with 13k's and the changeup was working well.I bet he threw 120 pitches.He was behind in the count a lot.The best i have seen him pitch since the Sunday IU game last yr.

Hurley made a couple of great plays in CF and had a big Triple.

Still struggling at the plate a little as a team, just can't get a hit with RISP.This seems like a problem the past couple of years.Hope we can fix this.

Minnesota also split with IU. Michigan swept Iowa

Go Bucks!

4 of the last 6 said...

much needed victory today. Gus' injury may be affecting him more than he may care to admit. with the inability to score runs (against, let's face it ... one of the weaker starting rotations in the conference) i'd like to see Brian Delucia's bat in the line - up but don't know where

BaseballBucks33 said...

What is Miller injury? Did not know he was hurt.I kinda thought something was wrong this weekend.He just did not look like himself.

I agree would like to see B.Delucia at 3rd with Rupert at SS.I hate to lose Engle to the bench,but i think we need Brian's bat right now.

rockybuckeye said...

Or you could just DH DeLucia and throw Meade at 1st.

Kennedy LF
Kovanda 2B
Shuck CF
Meade 1B
DeLuica DH
Rupert 3B
Whoever RF
Burkhart C
Engle SS

After being at all four games this weekend, I know the weather was terrible, but the crowd was a bit pathetic. I know different people, different strokes... but "we" didn't give the players much to respond to and excite. Maybe why they seemed to just play through the motions games 2 and 3?

JB pitched great, the team needed it, but I hope BT did the right thing in keeping him in that long. I know JB would keep going back out and get it done, but his pitch count was high, the weather bad... hope he has time to rest.

Big weekend coming up.

BaseballBucks33 said...

I agree to a point rocky.
At OSU the crowds don't come until the weather is nice.That is just a fact.The people don't show up or make noise unless it is nice out. Only die hard fans came out this weekend. Most of the people were family and friends of players and OSU baseball supporters.It hard to cheer when it's cold.This just is not baseball weather yet.

To me as a DIV 1 ball player you have to be ready to play every time you are on the diamond.I felt sat. we were not ready to play engery wise.You have to self motivate some times.You can't blame the players for all of it,the coach's have some part in it too.

Go Bucks!

rockybuckeye said...

Oh I know, I wasn't meaning to make it an excuse for the players, it is on their shoulders, but the atmosphere can add an extra lift, or on the opposite side make it imposing and quiet the other team. Saturday wasn't too bad, and the PSU players didn't seem to have too much trouble getting rowdy and throwing some chatter around.

I wasn't upset with the turnout, I know spring brings the casual fan, but I figured if you're there you have nothing to lose in cheering on. The cheering isn't really a cold/warm thing from what I've noticed the last 3 seasons. Bill Davis is pretty quiet throughout the season. Heaven forbid we actually have students interested int he program and showing some spirit.

BaseballBucks33 said...

I know the students are never in to baseball.The only time i see small groups is when they know the OSU starter. I sat with some of Dean Wolosiansky friends sat. They were pretty cool but not vocal at all.I think i was cheering for Dean more than they were.

Rocky, do you know any thing about Miller injury? Some thing does not act or seem right this weekend.He is off a little.