The USF baseball team fell to 2-4 after losing their third extra inning decision of the season. Tuesday, Jacksonville scored one in the top of the tenth after Dolphin shortstop Tom Alford reached first on an error and scored on a single by center fielder Chris Reier.
“We’ve lost four games by a total of five runs, so we’ve been in every game,” third baseman Jeff Baisley said. “It’s not like we’ve been blown out. We could easily be 6-0.”
In the first game of the season, the Bulls fell to Stetson 7-6 in the tenth and Bethune-Cookman Feb. 15 after a 13th inning walk off home run ended the game 3-2.
“We’ve lost some tough ball games,” second baseman Mike Macaluso said. “Once our team learns how to win these close games we’ll get on a roll here.”
Macaluso led off Tuesday’s game with his first career home run to left field. The Bulls scored a second run in the first when Baisley followed the lead off home run with a double; he scored on a wild pitch two batters later. Baisley went 4-5 on the day with a walk, three singles and his first inning double.
“(He’s) having some of the greatest at-bats,” USF coach Eddie Cardieri said about the freshman third baseman. “The last game at Jacksonville he’s up with a man on second, nobody out and two strikes, he’s trying to go the right side, and he hits a homer to right field. This kid, as a freshman, has been very impressive.”
The first inning ended with two men left on base; in total the Bulls were unable to capitalize on players on base, leaving 13 stranded throughout the day.
“I thought the first inning killed us,” Cardieri said. “In the first inning, we could have jumped out to a big lead and gotten to our bullpen a little earlier in the game. That probably was the biggest factor in the game.”
Junior transfer Ryan Gloger made his first appearance of the season, pitching four innings and getting the start.
“He wasn’t what we’ve seen in the past, like in the fall, but he went out there and competed with what I don’t consider to be his best stuff,” Cardieri said. “The edge came off a little early, and he hadn’t been out there in a real game yet.”
The Bulls had to play catch up after the sixth when Jacksonville took the lead 6-5. The Bulls tied the game in the seventh when designated hitter Chris Cuccia scored from second on a Chris Courier double.
- Jarrett Guthrie covers baseball and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org