COLUMBIA — With his team trailing 2-0, Rob Zastryzny couldn’t fully enjoy the standing ovation he was receiving. The left-handed junior halfheartedly high-fived a line of teammates as a cluster of fans behind the Missouri dugout clapped and cheered.
It had to be a familiar feeling. The Missouri baseball team's 2-0 loss to LSU on Friday night at Taylor Stadium, in which Zastryzny allowed only one earned run in 7 2/3 innings, was his Southeastern Conference-worst fifth of the season and the third in which his team failed to score a single run.
“His record’s not indicative of how he’s pitched,” Missouri coach Tim Jamieson said. “It’s indicative of the competition that he’s pitched against, and the fact that we haven’t given him a whole lot of run support on Fridays.”
In Zastryzny’s six starts this season, Missouri’s offense has generated a total of nine runs, six of which came in a win at home against San Francisco. Since that lone win for Zastryzny, he has received only one run of support in three outings.
Even so, Zastryzny assumed responsibility for the defeat.
“I know even if we don’t score, I can hold them to zero too,” Zastryzny said. “It’s as much me as it is them. I’m gonna be accountable in that.”
Zastryzny’s lone mistake was a hanging curveball on a two-strike count that LSU first baseman Mason Katz pushed just over the left field wall into the Missouri bullpen. Zastryzny dwelled on it after the game, referring to the home run as the pivotal point in the game several times.
“I could’ve kept that ball in the yard instead of hanging a curveball against whatever his name is,” Zastryzny said. “Hanging curveball, threw it right into his barrel so that’s on me.”
As for the offense, Zastryzny expressed faith that the runs will come when the games start to matter most.
“They’re gonna start hitting, they always do, especially when it counts later on in the season.”
Missouri will play the second game of its three-game series against LSU at 1 p.m. Saturday at Taylor Stadium.