The ASU baseball team was swept by the Cowboys of Oklahoma State in Stillwater over the weekend. Although, the Sun Devils were competitive in this series, they lost all three games, 8-5, 6-5 (11 innings) and 14-12.
The effort put forth by the players was adequate, but the story for this series was the starting pitching. All three of ASU’s starting pitchers struggled this weekend. Brett Lilek and Darin Gillies both were chased out of the game fairly early. Ryan Kellogg lasted six inning before being relieved, but still gave up six runs.
The bullpen couldn’t hold on during game two, which went eleven innings.
It appeared that in Stillwater, Oklahoma State just got what they needed–when they needed it. (Timely hits, an easy double play ground ball with runners on, etc.) Baseball can be like that sometimes.
If one is looking for consolation, this three game set was a non-conference series. But it doesn’t help in the eyes of the selection committee for the post-season.
The Devils can change momentum and erase the memory of this trip fairly quickly. This weekend, the Oregon Ducks come to Tempe. ASU is chasing Oregon, as the Sun Devils are in 4th place in the PAC-12 conference standings. (Oregon is in 3rd place)
This will not be an easy task. Oregon is 34-13 overall and 13-8 in conference play. If ASU thinks they are worthy of post-season play, and more importantly, if they want to convince the national selection committee of that, then they must take two out of three from Oregon.
Coach Esmay must rally his troops to not “lose a series twice” by obsessing about the trip to Stillwater. They are a solid team, with a shot of making it to a Super Regional. They need to look forward and focus on playing sound baseball every weekend from here on out.