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Baylor Baseball

Simmons Carted Off, Baylor Baseball Drops Series Opener to No. 23 Indiana, 8-4

February 23, 2024
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WACO, Texas – Baylor baseball (1-4) dropped its series opener to No. 23 Indiana (4-1), 8-4, Friday night at Baylor Ballpark.

The biggest storyline coming out of Friday’s loss was an injury to left fielder Hunter Simmons (Sr.), however. In the top of the first inning, Simmons was chasing down an extra-base hit when he crashed into the left field wall and got his left cleat caught on the padding – he was carted off the field shortly after.

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Starting outfielder Hunter Simmons (Sr.) was carted off in the first inning after running in the left field wall.

“It’s a major injury, and it hurts to see one of your teammates go down like that,” head coach Mitch Thompson said after the defeat. “But I thought the response was great [after the injury]. There was never a lack of fight. We stayed up there and got after it.”

Coming off a career outing in which he struck out 10 batters against Nebraska, right-handed pitcher Mason Marriott (Jr.) was nowhere near as sharp in Friday’s contest versus the Hoosiers. Across 2.1 frames, Marriott allowed seven hits, walked three batters and surrendered six earned runs on 64 pitches — just 36 of which were strikes.

On the bump for Indiana was righty Brayden Risedorph (So.), who kept the Bears’ bats quiet for the first two innings. In the third, Cole Posey (Sr.), who replaced Simmons in left field, dribbled an RBI groundout down the third base line with the bases loaded.

In the fourth, first baseman Will Pendergrass (RJr.) lined a double into left-center field to score designated hitter Wesley Jordan (Jr.) for his first RBI of the season. A few at-bats later, right fielder Enzo Apodaca (RJr.) drove a two-run double into the left field corner past the outstretched glove of a diving Devin Taylor (So.) – the Preseason Big Ten Player of the Year – to cut Indiana’s lead to 7-4.

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Lefty RJ Ruais (Fr.) allowed just one earned run across three innings of work out of the bullpen.

In his second career appearance on the mound, lefty RJ Ruais (Fr.) was solid out of the bullpen for the Bears, limiting the Hoosiers' offense and striking out three across three innings.

“RJ came in when the world was on fire and balls were getting hit all over the yard,” Thompson said. “He came in and brought an energy level to it and attacked and was outstanding. … We’re going to keep running [young] guys out there. We’re learning and getting better, no question.”

The lone earned run charged to Ruais was mostly because of some spotty defense in the fourth from Hunter Teplanszky (Jr.), who allowed two bunt singles down the third base line. Those two particular plays weren’t counted as miscues, but Baylor finished the contest with three errors.

“There are instinctual things of the game that have to continue to improve and get better at it,” Thompson said. “We’re working on it. We’re working on teaching them and showing them. The guys are working on it too. It’ll start getting better here real quick.”

Another young arm who came out of the pen for the Bears on Friday was Stephen Sepulveda (Fr.). The freshman righty threw 2.2 no-hit innings and allowed just one base-runner in his outing. After a rough appearance last weekend against Nebraska, Sepulveda has logged back-to-back good outings against Lamar and Indiana. 

For the fourth straight game, Baylor’s batting order struggled in the back half of the ballgame. The Bears didn’t plate a single run across the final five frames. Seven of Baylor’s eight hits came in the first four innings.

 

 

Final: No. 23 Indiana 8 - Baylor 4

W: Julian Tonghini (1-0) L: Mason Marriott (0-1)

POTG: RJ Ruais (3.0 IP, 4 H, R, ER, BB, 3 K, 13 BF, 48 TP)


WHAT’S NEXT

Baylor baseball (1-4) will continue its series at 2 p.m. on Saturday against No. 23 Indiana (4-1). The contest will be streamed on ESPN+.

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Simmons Carted Off, Baylor Baseball Drops Series Opener to No. 23 Indiana, 8-4

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