I'll not mince words: we needed that.
We needed it for the series, we needed it for our chances to host a regional, and more than anything, we needed that so the announcers would stop treating us like the little brother in the series.
1) Kyle Wright had every pitch in his arsenal, including the drop down side arm curve and slider. More importantly, he managed to keep his pitch count down, which is not always the case in high K total games. For instance, AJ Puk K'd 11, but was only able to go 6 innings before his pitch count hit 110 and he was done for the game. Kyle Wright K'd 10, allowed 3 hits and 2 walks, and faced only 4 batters over the minimum in a complete game shutout (115 pitches).
They say the true mark of an Ace is his ability to stop a losing streak. We had lost the last three games (albeit to two of the top 3 teams in the nation, if you ask me, in aTm and Louisville), were facing the #1 team in the nation, and his counterpart was the presumptive choice to go 1-1 in the 2016 MLB draft. With all that in front of him, Kyle Wright threw the best game of his career. He is, unquestionably, our ace now.
2) Chinfante shattered his 2nd car windshield this season on a 400 foot plus bomb to left-center. Without the photographic evidence, I'm not sure I would have believed this ball landed. Puk threw a 97mph heater low and in, and Chinfante hit it like one of Bing Crosby's children. (My references are timely.) Though his batting average numbers aren't great, Chinfante is showing star potential, and is providing some much needed juice to the lineup from the cleanup spot.
3) Peter Alonso's wrist still looks like it was flattened by a road paver. Though some may claim this is insensitive, it was clear Florida's lineup was not the same without the junior thumper in the middle of it. The ESPN announcers kept claiming he'll be back by regionals, but does anyone really think a broken wrist will heal enough in 2-3 weeks to be able to handle the stresses of hitting a baseball? I just don't see it. Do not understate how important the big first baseman is to their lineup. In a weekend in which NC State head coach Elliott Avent missed the Louisville series after being bit by a copperhead who was fighting with his dog, you could argue Kevin O'Sullivan was the coach who was truly snake-bit.
1) None. Well, technically, you could count it as a negative that medical science has yet to master the cloning of Kyle Wright so we can put him on the mound today, but we all know Vanderbilt's Biomedical Engineering group are more concerned with perfecting their Dansby Swanson. As of press time, they just can't get the hair right.
On the Mound
Sunday, May 15 12pm CT SECN
Patrick "Mad Dog" Raby (6-1, 2.09) vs. RHP Alex "Juggalo Soda" Faedo (9-1, 3.10)
I'll just leave this here:
See you in the comments.
Hugs and kisses,