Baseball Drops Opener to Michigan
Feb. 22, 2013
Port St. Lucie, Fla. - The 2013 baseball season opener for the Fordham Rams against Michigan on Friday could be summed up in two words: missed opportunities. The Rams left 13 men on base, while Michigan cashed in on some Ram mistakes, as the Wolverines downed Fordham, 9-1, at the Mets Spring Training Complex in Port St. Lucie, Florida.
The Rams (0-1) kicked off the game with scoring chances in each of the first three innings. In the first, Matthew Cianci led off with a double and moved to third on a failed pickoff attempt with one out. However, a strikeout and a fly out ended the threat.
Michigan (1-3) though cashed in on its first scoring opportunity in the bottom of the frame, getting a pair of singles, a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly by Jacob Cronenworth to take a 1-0 lead.
In the second, the Rams received singles from Mike Mauri and Ryan Phelan, as well as a wild pitch to have runners at second and third with two outs, but a groundout back to the pitcher ended the threat.
The third inning saw another missed chance to score for Fordham. The Rams loaded the bases with two outs on walks to Cianci, Ryan Lee, and Mauri, but Michigan hurler James Bourque struck out Charles Galiano to keep the Wolverines ahead, 1-0.
Fordham finally broke through in the fourth inning, as Phelan connected for his second hit of the game, moved to second on a sacrifice, and scored on a double by Ian Edmiston.
The Wolverines answered right back in the bottom of the fourth, scoring three times to take a 4-1 lead. With one out, Kyle Jusick tripled to right center and scored on a dropped third strike to Jack Sexton, who reached first base on the wild pitch. After a fly out, a walk, and a hit by pitch loaded the bases, Patrick Biondi connected for a two-run single through the right side to give Michigan a three-run edge.
Fordham looked to respond right away in the fifth, when Tim Swatek ripped a one-out triple to right center and Mauri drew a two-out walk. On a throw over to first, Swatek got caught off base at third on the throw back and was tagged out at home, ending another threat.
The Wolverines made it 6-1 in the seventh, as Travis Maezes singled to right, stole second and third, and scored on Cronenworth's second sacrifice fly of the afternoon.
Michigan capped the scoring in the eighth, when Michael O'Neill hit a three-run home to left, his first of the season.
Bourque (1-0) recorded the win, giving up one run on six hits with five walks and four strikeouts over 5.2 innings pitched, while Fordham starter Joseph Charest (0-1) was hooked for the loss, allowing five runs on four hits with two walks and four strikeouts in 5.1 innings. Jimmy Murphy came in to relieve Charest in the sixth inning for Fordham. He gave up four runs on three hits in 2.2 innings of relief.
At the plate, Fordham had plenty of scoring chances but left 13 men on base over the course of the game. Phelan and Cianci each had a pair of hits, while Swatek and Edmiston each had an extra-base hit. Mauri reached base four times in the game, collecting a hit and three walks in five plate appearances.
The same two teams will match up for a doubleheader on Saturday, beginning at 11:00 AM.