Tim Jamieson’s 400th and 401st career victories as head coach of the MU baseball team couldn’t have been much stronger offensively than they were this weekend against Florida International in Miami: two games, 27 runs, 28 hits, two comfortable wins.
After entering the seventh inning of Saturday’s game trailing 6-2, the Tigers put the game away decisively, scoring five runs in the frame and 13 in the final three innings en route to a 15-7 victory.
The offensive assault was led by sophomore right fielder Ryan Lollis, whose seventh inning grand slam lifted Missouri from a 6-3 deficit to a 7-6 lead. Junior John McKee had two RBIs and fellow junior Jacob Priday had three, and junior Evan Frey added three hits and scored four runs. All but one Missouri starter recorded a hit in the game.
“We made some good adjustments at the plate and took some great swings,” Jamieson said after Saturday’s win.
“Our focus really sharpened when it needed to, with runners on and in the bases-loaded situations.”
Friday’s game was more of the same from Missouri batters. Another seventh-inning surge, this time of seven runs, blew open what was a one-run contest. Gary Arndt, Dan Pietroburgo and Aaron Senne, who batted sixth, seventh and eighth in the lineup, each notched three hits in another team effort.
While the team’s bats couldn’t have been much hotter in Friday and Saturday’s games, Tiger pitchers found more varied results.
Sophomore Rick Zagone worked his way through a difficult second inning in which he gave up two hits, a walk and a balk and hit one batter on his way to recording the win on Friday night. Outside of the secondinning, Zagone struck out five in a relatively efficient five innings of work.
Sophomore Aaron Crow, however, struggled Saturday, giving up six hits, three walks and three earned runs in 3 1/3 innings pitched. Jamieson said that the team’s success this year will rely greatly onhow Crow performs, but was pleased with the bullpen’s showing in the rest of the game.
“Another good thing (in addition to the offense) was our bullpen putting up some zeros to allow us to come back,” he said.
The team will finish its series against Florida International at 11 a.m. today before continuing its string of road trips next week in Arizona.
Jamieson is one of only three coaches in the program to record 400 career wins. Gene McArtor (733 wins) and John “Hi” Simmons (481) have each been elected to Missouri’s Hall of Fame for their time at the helm of the program.