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Baylor Baseball Takes Series Finale Over No. 9 Texas Tech, 11-7

May 1, 2022
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WACO, Texas – Baylor baseball (22-22, 5-13) closed out the series with a win over No. 9 Texas Tech (31-16, 11-7) on Sunday afternoon, 11-7.

With all the injuries endured to the pitching staff in recent weeks, Blake Helton made his return to the starting rotation at the perfect time on Sunday. Helton’s last start was February 19th versus Maryland. Since then Helton has been limited by injuries, but he was able to come back last weekend against Texas, where he pitched an inning in relief. 

Considering Helton had essentially two months of lost time, he did a great job competing and staying around the strike zone early. Texas Tech’s, Cole Stilwell, hit a solo home run in the top of the first to give the Red Raiders the 1-0 lead. Nonetheless, I really liked what I saw from Helton in that first inning. 

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Helton on the mound

For the first time this weekend, the Bears' offense found a spark of their own. With two outs in the bottom of the first inning, Kyle Nevin shot an RBI double down the right-field line to score Jack Pineda from second. With runners on the corners, Cam Caley blooped a ball just past the reach of the Red Raiders' third baseman to give BU the 3-1 lead. There was almost a sigh of relief that could be felt from the Baylor dugout and all the way throughout the stands. 

The Bears scored more runs in the first inning on Sunday than they had so far in the first two games of the series combined. The offense also finally picked up some much-needed two-out hits that had eluded them all weekend. 

Helton struggled a bit more in the second inning, but when it mattered most, he was able to get out of a bases-loaded jam to end the inning. Helton ended with 2 IP allowing 4 H, R, ER, and a BB on 37 total pitches. 

The bottom of the second inning started with Jacob Schoenvogel having another great at-bat and taking a leadoff walk. Pineda singled through the left side and Tre Richardson also took a walk to load the bases. With one out and a 2-2 count, Nevin crushed a bases-clearing double into the left-center gap to put the Bears up 6-1. Through two innings, Nevin had an astonishing four RBIs. The inning was extended when Cam Caley hit a chopper back to the pitcher, but Nevin made an exciting headfirst slide into home plate to avoid the tag. Baylor led 7-1 through two innings. 

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Cam Caley celebrates a double

Nevin continued to add to his monster day with another double in the fourth inning, this time down the left-field line. Valdez and Cam Caley both followed with walks to load the bases. Tech handed out another free pass, this time to Harrison Caley, to walk in a run. Esteban Cardoza-Oquendo then lined a shot into right field to score another run. After that, Schoenvogel continued his great afternoon with a 2 RBI single into center field. The Bears put an awesome 11 runs on the board through four innings. 

Matt Voelker pitched in relief of Helton and his stats don’t tell the full story. He threw the ball pretty well for most of his outing, but two home runs from the Red Raiders put blemishes on his afternoon. Voelker finished the day with 5 IP, 7 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, and 5 Ks on 81 total pitches. 

Texas Tech fought back scoring two runs in the top of the eighth to bring the game to 11-7 BU. But Adam Muirhead mitigated the damage as much as he possibly could. With the bases loaded and one out, Muirhead got Jace Jung to pop up to left field. Even though a run scored, it was a success limiting one of the best players in the country to only a sac-fly.

The offense on Sunday made the woes of the past two days feel like lightyears away. There were a lot of great performances today from all across the lineup and it came from guys that you don’t typically expect such as Valdez, Schoenvogel, and the Caley twins. Overall, it was a fantastic job all around for the green and gold. 

At this point in the season, this team is just fighting to make the Big 12 Tournament, and picking up a win today was a step in the right direction.

 

Final: Baylor 11 - Texas Tech 7

W: Matt Voelker (4-5) L: Trendan Parish (2-4) 

POTG: Kyle Nevin 5-5, 3 R, 3 2B, 4 RBI


TOP QUOTES

Coach Rodriguez on the plate approaches today

“I think our plate approaches have been really good. Some of those guys is that is one thing that they are is really patient, they are not going to swing at something just to swing, they are not going to force an at-bat. Taking a bases-loaded walk on a  3-2 count is really hard. And Harrison Caley can do that, that’s really impressive. That’s one thing I really do like about the at-bats we took we continued to take good at-bats. Once again, you may not get a hit, you can still have a good at-bat and not get a hit and those guys showed it today.”

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Kyle Nevin on what attributed to his five-hit afternoon and on his big bases-clearing double

“A little bit in the approach. Just trying to get something going for the team. Kind of provide a spark at the top, and I got to come up in some big spots and I got the job done… In the first two games, we got traffic on the bases. We had people, we just left them out, we just couldn’t get that big hit. Providing that spark definitely helped us for sure.”

Blake Helton on returning to the mound

“It felt really good to be back on the mound. I’ve been watching from the dugout for a while. Last week at UT, got in a little bit over an inning. It was nice to make another start and hopefully, I can build up from here and go more and more innings every week… I had a little bit of nerves which I haven’t had in a really wrong time that I did not get last year or this year so far. It kind of felt like being a freshman back out there again.”


WHAT’S NEXT

Baylor baseball (22-22, 5-13) will take on Tarleton State (13-30, 6-15) on Tuesday at Baylor Ballpark. The first pitch is scheduled for 6:30 P.M.

Discussion from...

Baylor Baseball Takes Series Finale Over No. 9 Texas Tech, 11-7

804 Views | 5 Replies | Last: 18 days ago by Johnny Bear
MrGolfguy
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W
Well, I ain't no greenhorn!!
BUGWBBear
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Shocking. Miracles do happen
Jorkel
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Weird..I must have Stockholm syndrome…winning feels wrong at this point.
Johnny Bear
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Glad we salvaged one. Still - 5 total B12 conference wins to date and 2 of those were Kansas. I realize we've had injury issues, especially to key pitchers, but it's still not good that the depth is that thin.
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