Diamonds in the Desert: A Baseball Blog from Tucson


Two AWESOME Tucson Wins!
June 26, 2012, 15:34
Filed under: Uncategorized

Last night was a bigger-than-huge night for baseball fans in the Tucson area as the University of Arizona Wildcats’ baseball team crushed the Univ of South Carolina Gamecocks, 4 to 1, to win their first College World Series championship in years (last was in 1986)!

Johnny Field shows an NBA-worthy vertical leap as he heads to the top of a pile of celebrating Wildcats in the middle of the Omaha, Neb., field. (Photo by TED KIRK / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

The Cats needed only the first two (of three) games to send the Gamecocks packing…and in both games Arizona led from start to finish.  There was a moment last night when the Gamecocks tied the game, but Arizona responded with a three-run ninth inning that S. Carolina couldn’t touch.  Cat’s starting pitcher, James Farris, didn’t get a decision, having allowed the tying run to the Gamecocks, but pitched very well through 7 2/3 innings.  Arizona’s RF Robert Refsnyder was named the “Most Outstanding Player” of the tournament.  Read more about the game from today’s Arizona Daily Star.

At precisely the same time the Wildcats won their championship game, the Tucson Padres broke out with a three-run fourth inning at Fresno to take a four to one lead against the home team Grizzlies.  In the fourth, the Pads greeted Grizzly starter, Eric Hacker, with four singles (one of which was an RBI single), and a 2RBI double by Sawyer Carroll before Hacker registered his first out in the inning.  Meantime, our starter, Colt Hynes (who also got his first professional hit to lead off the third inning), had been keeping Fresno at bay with a lot of help from his defense.  The seams came apart in the fifth, however, when Colt loaded the bases and then allowed a Grizzly Grand Slam to Charlie Culberson that lifted Fresno to a six-four lead.  Argh!  Thankfully, Tucson wasn’t out of it yet!  Sure, it was the last inning Colt pitched, but it was still only the mid-point in the game!  With two outs in the sixth, Amadeo Zazueta hit a clutch double, bringing up the pitcher’s spot.  With Colt out of the game, Manager Terry Kennedy sent Cody Decker in to pinch hit.  The mighty Cody tied the game with one huge two-run blast right out of the ballpark!  It was the first pinch hit homer for the T-Pads in the 2012 season.  And we kept up the heat…  Tucson relievers shut down the Grizzlies for the final four innings (four relievers combined for no runs on only three hits and one walk), while our offense surged one more time on Fresno’s first reliever, Mitch Lively.  Lively got two quick outs, but then allowed a single, a walk, an RBI double, RBI single, and a run-scoring error before he got the final out in the inning.  Tucson up by three – and there we remained to finish the game!  Our first reliever of the night, Eddie Kunz, took the win – his third of the year – while Erik Hamren earned his second save in as many nights!  Every Tucson starting player had at least one hit last night;  Sawyer Carroll ended the night with three RBIs (two for four with a double); and Anthony Contreras continues his steady offensive surge (two for four with a double, a walk, two RBIs and a run-scored).  Tucson has now guaranteed AT LEAST a series split with these Grizzlies!  Final Score:  Tucson 9; Fresno 6!!

Transactions and Injury Report.   RHP Kip Wells has been called up to take a spot start for the Parent Unit in their game against the Astros in Houston tonight.  Ironically, to vacate a spot on their roster, San Diego had to option Andy Parrino back to Tucson.  SD has also optioned Brad Boxberger back to Tucson after calling up Nick Vincent from AA San Antonio.  And, of course, we can’t avoid the REALLY big transaction move today:  The Chicago Cubs have called up 1B Anthony Rizzo!  Rizzo will make his Cubs MLB debut tonight versus the NY Mets.  Here’s more on that story:  Rizzo.

One More in Fresno…  Tucson and Fresno battle in the final game of the series tonight at 7:05pm.  Don’t forget, you can catch the game on Tejano 1600 AM radio!   The T-Pads return to Tucson for a long homestand beginning tomorrow night.  They’ll kick off with three games against the Colorado Springs Sky Sox (CO Rockies AAA affiliate), followed by four against the Salt Lake Bees (LA Angels AAA affiliate).  Tomorrow night is Wienerschnitzel Wiener Wednesday (one dollar hot dogs all night long) and Social Media Night!  Check out this week’s awesome social media special on Facebook and/or Twitter…it’s another good one!  Gates open at 6pm for 7:05pm first pitch – I’ll see you there!

(Disclaimer – This posting has not been reviewed/approved by Pima County, the City of Tucson, the Tucson Padres, Tucson AAA Baseball, Arizona Diamondbacks, San Diego Padres, PCL, MiLB, MLB, National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues, Tucson Baseball LLC, or any other baseball official and represents the views and biases of the author alone)

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