We have enjoyed blogging about the Longhorns over the past few seasons, but due to busy schedules, we are going to have to take a break. You can always find out the latest information on the Texas Baseball team by going to TexasSports.com. Thanks for your support over the past few seasons.
Much the same as last year, Texas was swept by Stanford in Palo Alto this past weekend. The Longhorns are currently in the midst of a four-game losing skid after starting the season with a pleasant 6-1 record. Bright spots on offense this series included Weston Hall (4-for-8 on the weekend) and Matt Moynihan (2-for-4 on Friday).
The Longhorns look to snap their losing streak this afternoon when they welcome the UTPA Broncs to Disch-Falk Field. First pitch is scheduled for 4:30pm, and freshman RHP Chad Hollingsworth is reportedly starting for Texas.
Texas makes its first road trip of 2013 this weekend, traveling to Palo Alto, California to take on the Stanford Cardinal. Stanford welcomed Texas last year (after Texas hosted in 2010 and 2011), and swept a young and inexperienced Longhorn team. Currently riding a five-game win streak, the Cardinal will pose the greatest challenge to Texas thus far in 2013. Cardinal outfielder Austin Wilson, a highly-touted prospect, has been taken out of the lineup for at least six weeks with a stress reaction at the top of his right elbow. For a more in-depth look at Stanford, check out their entry in FJLA’s Know Your Enemy series.
Friday, 7:30 p.m. CST: RHP Parker French (2-0, 1.35 ERA) vs. RHP Mark Appel (1-1, 1.93 ERA)
Parker French solidified his role as Texas’ Friday ace last week, pitching 7 innings against Nebraska, while Mark Appel is quite used to being Stanford’s ace. After turning down millions from the Pirates, Appel has returned to the Sunken Diamond for his senior season, and has thus far pitched 14 innings, striking out 14 and walking only 4.
Saturday, 3 p.m. CST: LHP Dillon Peters (1-0, 2.08 ERA) vs. LHP John Hochstatter (0-0, 3.18 ERA)
Dillon Peters worked his way in and out of jams last Saturday, lowering his ERA in the process. John Hochstatter will be a formidable lefty for the Longhorns to face, after he threw 6.1 innings against Fresno State, striking out seven with one walk and allowing two earned runs.
Sunday 3 p.m. CST: RHP Nathan Thornhill (1-1, 2.53 ERA) vs. Bobby Zarubin (1-0, 0.84 ERA)
Nathan Thornhill showed a remarkable turnaround in his last outing against Nebraska, partnering with Corey Knebel to provide a shutout for Texas. Stanford has juggled a few options for their Sunday starter this season, but Mark Marquess has elected to go with Zarubin against Texas this weekend. Zarubin has pitched 10.2 innings in two starts so far in 2013.
- Mark Payton is currently batting .536 with a .750 slugging percentage.
- Texas is just one game behind Stanford in the overall record of this series, which currently stands at 28-27-1.
- The Longhorn pitching staff is currently holding opposing batters to a .230 batting average while Stanford’s staff holds opponents to .217.
The Bearkats of Sam Houston State University came to Austin on a mission to prove they were more than a team to be pushed around at the Disch, and left town after accomplishing just that. Augie Garrido made a surprise last-minute substitution, electing to start sophomore transfer RHP Cameron Cox in lieu of freshman RHP Chad Hollingsworth. Jacob Felts was given the night off for the first time in not-s0-recent memory, and freshman catcher Jeremy Montalbano spent his evening behind the plate for the Longhorns.
Cox held a clean sheet for the first inning, but ran into trouble in the second when SHSU used a double, triple, and RBI ground-out to score their first two runs of the night. The Bearkats would not surrender the lead from that point, adding another run in the fourth. Sam Houston starter Tyler Eppler worked four perfect innings before Mark Payton started off the fifth with a single. Texas made a dent in the SHSU lead during the sixth inning when freshman Ben Johnson recorded his first hit as a Longhorn before coming home on a Matt Moynihan triple in the next at-bat. Moynihan was then brought home on an RBI ground-out off the bat of Taylor Stell, bringing Texas within a run with a score of 3-2. Unfortunately for the Longhorns, the Bearkats quickly re-extended their lead, scoring two more runs in the top of the seventh. Texas was able to scrape together one additional run in the bottom of the eighth, but eventually found themselves unable to rally back, falling 5-3.
This was a hard loss for many reasons, including snapping the five-game win streak Texas had compiled. Many Longhorn fans believe they saw ghosts of 2012 at the plate, but we are confident Assistant Coach Tommy Nicholson and Volunteer Assistant Ryan Russ will get the Texas batters past their current issues with off-speed pitches. After the game, Mark Payton (3-for-4 on the evening) assured the media that the team hadn’t been looking past SHSU to the upcoming Stanford series, adding “We are now looking forward to Stanford and we are going to have a fresh mind and some more motivation to get back after them.”
Texas will travel to Palo Alto this weekend for a three-game weekend series against Stanford at the Sunken Diamond. The Longhorns will surely be looking to avenge last season’s sweep by the Cardinal. We will have an in-depth series preview up in the next few days.
Pitching took a giant step forward as the No. 24 ranked Longhorns welcomed Nebraska to the Disch this past weekend. The Cornhuskers came to Austin with a 0-4 record, and left without recording a W as Augie Garrido coached his team to a sweep using clean pitching, timely hitting, and clean defense. The offense provided some pop, but more often than not, line drives were hit directly to a well-placed Nebraska defense, and each game turned into a pitching duel of sorts.
Game one saw sophomore Parker French face off against Nebraska Junior Brandon Pierce, and the two right-handers brought their best stuff. French worked 6.1 innings, working his way in and out of trouble as he allowed eight hits, walked his first batter of the year, but struck out six. He allowed both of his runs in the second inning when Nebraska managed to string together four consecutive hits. French kept his cool, eventually inducing a double play to end the inning, and keeping a clean sheet for the rest of his night. After falling behind 2-0, Texas began to battle back in the fourth inning when Mark Payton, C.J Hinojosa, and Jacob Felts all singled to produce a run. The Longhorns would take the lead in the sixth by way of small ball, using three walks, two stolen bases, a sacrifice bunt, and a single to bring the score to 3-2 in Texas’ favor. After the Huskers put two base runners on against Parker French in the top of the seventh, Skip Johnson turned to relief pitcher Ty Marlow to get Texas out of the jam. Marlow once again did his job and got the Longhorns out of the inning unscathed, passing the ball to a stellar Corey Knebel to start the eighth inning. Knebel was lights out on Friday evening, striking out the side in the eighth and ninth innings. Not satisfied with a one-run lead, the Longhorns struck again with a five-run onslaught in the bottom of the eighth. With a final score of 8-2, Texas took game one, and Augie Garrido took his 700th victory as the Longhorns’ Head Coach.
Saturday provided a beautiful day for baseball, and the Longhorns and Huskers quickly engaged in a pitcher’s duel that would end as a nail-biter. Dillon Peters was named the Saturday starter for the Longhorns, and proved more than capable of taking on the new role, scattering six hits over six complete innings, allowing only two runs (one earned) while striking out four and walking one. Texas managed to score single runs in the second and third innings to give their southpaw some breathing room, but Nebraska fought back with their own single-run innings in the fifth and seventh. When Mark Payton earned an RBI via a walk in the bottom of the seventh, Texas fans had no choice but to hold their breath and hope the 3-2 lead would hold up. Skip Johnson had chosen to play matchups on Saturday evening, pitting six different Texas relievers against Nebraska in the final 3 innings, and, for the most part, this strategy paid off until the eighth inning. Cameron Cox began the top of the eighth by walking Nebraska outfielder Chad Christensen, and was promptly replaced with Josh Urban, making his first appearance of the 2013 season. Urban allowed a single which moved Christensen to third, and then a sacrifice fly brought home Nebraska’s tying run. Urban limited further damage and was relieved by a much-improved Toller Boardman, who threw a complete inning and allowed zero runs. Chad Hollingsworth, Tuesday’s hero, took the mound for the final out of the top half of the ninth inning, inducing a ground-out and giving the Longhorns the chance for a walk-off victory. Nebraska closer Dylan Vogt induced a quick grounder from Taylor Stell, but then hit a rough patch with the heart of the Longhorn order at the plate. Erich Weiss stepped up with a double to right center and was joined on base by Mark Payton, intentionally walked to set up a double play. With two on and one out, Augie Garrido pulled his freshman shortstop, C.J Hinojosa, aside to impart some wisdom. Their brief discussion worked, and Hinojosa delivered a single up the middle to bring both Erich Weiss and the walk-off victory home for Texas.
Nathan Thornhill was given the Sunday start for Texas, and was tasked with the role of delivering a quality start after a bumpy outing the previous weekend. He did just that, pitching 7 complete innings, striking out three, and only allowing one walk. The only two hits he allowed came in the third and sixth innings and, with the help of his defense, he was able to mitigate any damage that could have been done. Not to be outdone, Nebraska senior right hander Ryan Hander struck out seven Texas batters over six innings and managed to limit the scoring to two runs. The first run came in the fourth inning as Taylor Stell led off by getting plunked on a 1-1 pitch. He promptly stole second base and was advanced to third on a ground-out to first base by Erich Weiss. Mark Payton would step up to the plate next and show why he was the nation’s hottest hitter, especially with runners in scoring position. On the very first pitch he smacked a double to center field, scoring Stell and improving his day to 2-2. Unfortunately, Hinojosa and McElroy would both strike out ending the inning, but the Horns had all the runs they would need. Payton would again be involved in the scoring in the sixth inning when he led off with a single, advanced on a Hinojosa sacrifice bunt and scored on a Jacob Felts single, making the score 2-0. Corey Knebel would take over in the 8th inning and earn his third save of the year, pitching back to back 1-2-3 innings.
Texas will host the Sam Houston State University Bearkats (3-4) tonight at UFCU Disch-Falk Field. First pitch is scheduled for a slightly early 5pm, and we expect SHSU to start RHP Tyler Eppler (0-0) against Texas RHP Chad Hollingsworth (2-0).
Texas will welcome the Nebraska Cornhuskers to Disch-Falk Field this weekend for a three-game series. As former conference foes, the Longhorns and Huskers have a storied history, and the two teams currently find themselves with an overall record knotted at 28-28. Texas has won eight of the last ten games against Nebraska, but the Cornhuskers currently have the edge at the Disch with a record of 15-12. For a more in-depth look at Nebraska’s overall outlook in 2013, check out FJLA’s preseason Know Your Enemy post here. Currently, the Huskers hold a 0-4 record in 2013, but they will certainly be eager to earn a W on Texas’ home turf.
Friday, 7 p.m.: RHP Brandon Pierce (0-1, 22.50 ERA) vs. RHP Parker French (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
Look for Parker French to continue his campaign as the Longhorn ace in 2013. After pitching seven quality innings against Sacramento State, French will come against a challenge in the harder-hitting bats of Nebraska. Brandon Pierce gave up five earned runs in a two-inning appearance against CSU Bakersfield, a game which Nebraska lost 9-4.
Saturday, 1 p.m.: RHP Christian DeLeon (0-0, 1.93 ERA) vs. LHP Dillon Peters (1-0, 2.57 ERA)
Lefty Dillon Peters has been bumped up to Saturday after a stellar Sunday start last week. The sophomore southpaw dazzled with his steady pace and focus, and he will surely come to the mound ready to play on Saturday. Christian DeLeon allowed USC four hits and only one run in his first outing of the season, before Nebraska lost the game after senior RHP Dylan Vogt, who was steady in 2012, gave up two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning.
Sunday 12 p.m.: RHP Ryan Hander (0-0, 5.06 ERA) vs. RHP Nathan Thornhill (0-1, 7.36 ERA)
Coming off a rocky outing last Saturday, Nathan Thornhill will look to improve his ERA and show Skip Johnson what he is capable of as a starter. Ryan Hander pitched 5.1 innings against Number 22 Cal State Fullerton, allowing four runs (three earned) on four hits, with a K:BB ratio of 1:2.
- DH Matt Moynihan has recorded a hit in each of his first four games as a Longhorn.
- Augie Garrido is one win away from his 700th victory at Texas.
- Nebraska led the Big Ten in home runs in 2012 with 47.
Chad Hollingsworth earned his first win as a Texas Longhorn, Corey Knebel saved his first game of 2013, and the Texas Longhorns out-pitched a talented UT-Arlington Mavericks team to win 2-1 last night at Disch-Falk Field. Both offenses hit the ball hard but rarely found an opening, and the teams relied on pitching to keep the parity.
After being effectively neutralized by sophomore right hander Chad Nack for the first two innings, Texas got things going in the third inning, after Corey McElroy followed up a stellar, run saving play in the top half of the frame by leading off with a double. Weston Hall struck out looking on a 3-2 pitch, but Matt Moynihan laid down an expert bunt, caught between the pitcher and the catcher, and the Mavericks could nothing about it with his speed down the line, making him safe at first and advancing McElroy to third with just one out. Moynihan stole second and Taylor Stell was hit by a pitch to load the bases for junior Erich Weiss, the best hitter on the team for the last two years. The tall second basemen would not disappoint, depositing the 1-1 pitch into left field, and scoring McElroy and Moynihan. This was Weiss’ second opposite field hit on the night, and his 2RBI were the only runs Texas would score. Other than the third inning blip, Nack pitched well and was only scheduled for three innings. In the fourth inning he was replaced by sophomore right hander Zach Thompson who gave up three walks over three innings but was able to mitigate any damage the Texas offense could muster. Junior right hander John Beck, a highly rated prospect by Baseball America, finished the game for the Mavericks by pitching two complete innings, striking out one, and allowing no hits.
Highly touted freshman right hander Chad Hollingsworth (Robinson HS, Waco) pitched around defensive mistakes and a gutsy UTA line up to get his first win on the 40 acres. Going five innings he struck out three and walked two, and the only run he allowed came in the 4th inning on the heels of a rare mistake by junior right fielder Mark Payton who misjudged the trajectory of a well-hit ball and allowed it to roll by him to the fence, giving Matt Shortall a leadoff triple. Maverick senior outfielder Jake Pinchback quickly put the ball in play with a ground out to third base and drove in UTA’s first and only run of the evening. Sophomore transfer Madison Carter wisely went to first for the out, and Hollingsworth made quick work of the next two hitters, retiring them each on the first pitch. It was smooth sailing in the 5th and final inning for the freshman. After walking the leadoff man he induced a double play from Derek Miller, and then retired the next batter, Ryan Walker, on a fly out.
From there, Travis Duke came in for the 6th inning and retired the Maverick hitters in order, striking out two. After recording the first out of the 7th inning, Duke gave up a single to Peter Cuomo and was relieved by sophomore Cameron Cox. Pitching coach Skip Johnson had him on a short leash because after the next hitter, Travis Sibley, singled to center field, he was promptly pulled for junior transfer Ty Marlow, hero of the Friday night’s game against Sacramento State. Marlow once again picked up his teammates and induced the final two outs of the inning, limiting the UTA damage two just two hits. Junior closer Corey Knebel came on in the 8th inning and looked much more comfortable on the mound than his weekend outings, retiring the Mavericks 1-2-3. Knebel ran into a little adversity in the bottom of the 9th, giving up a leadoff single to Shortall, and had to bear down after Ryan Walker advanced pinch runner Cody Dyvig to second with a slow ground out to third. UTA head coach Darin Thomas substituted Cuomo for highly rated prospect, Darien McLemore, son of beloved Texas Ranger, Mark. Although Darien cut an imposing figure at the plate, Knebel opted to go right at him, firing a fastball inside at the hands to show that he would not be intimidated, and on a 2-2 pitch, blew a high fastball by the freshman from Southlake. Brandon Vinyard would not fare much better against the dominant Georgetown native, swinging at another high fastball to end the game.
Photo: Donald Boyles