Freshmen lead No. 4 TCU to 2-0 victory over Baylor Tuesday

    94
    print

    Frogs’ freshmen Andrew Mitchell and Stefan Crichton led No. 4 TCU to a 2-0 victory over Baylor Tuesday afternoon in Waco.

    Mitchell threw 6 2/3 innings for his first collegiate win and Crichton closed out the victory for his first career save. Junior shortstop Taylor Featherston provided the offense for the Frogs with two RBIs.

    Mitchell (1-0) held the Bears in check for much of the contest, facing the minimum number of batters through six innings. Mitchell didn’t allow a run and surrendered two hits in 6 2/3 innings. He walked three and struck out four. Crichton pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings without allowing a hit and striking out two.

    “I’ve been in baseball for 21 years and that was as good of a performance and mound presence as I’ve ever been a part of,” head coach Jim Schlossnagle said.

    “It’s awesome,” Mitchell said. “The defense played great behind me and I just threw strikes. It’s good to get the first one out of the way.”

    TCU had runners on in two of the first three innings but couldn’t get the big hit. A lead-off single in the first was erased by a double play ball and a lead-off error in the third was erased on a pick-off play.

    The Frogs finally cashed in on a golden opportunity in the fourth inning. Senior second baseman Jerome Pena opened the inning with a base knock to left field. Junior left fielder Jason Coats worked a walk to put two on with nobody out. Senior first baseman Joe Weik executed a perfect sacrifice bunt to advance the runners 90 feet. Featherston battled to a 2-2 count before lining a single up the middle to plate the go-ahead runs and after four, the Frogs led 2-0.

    In the second inning, Mitchell picked off Baylor right fielder Cal Towey to end the inning and in the fourth, he got Bears’ catcher Josh Ludy to ground into the inning-ending double play.

    Twice the Bears lined into a double play to end a potential threat. In the sixth, the Bears had a runner reach on a one-out single, but BU’s Steve DalPorto lined out to Featherston, who threw behind the runner at first to end the frame. In the seventh, Baylor’s Brooks Pinckard doubled to open the inning, but was hung out to dry as he tried to steal third. Logan Vick hit the ball sharply to Weik at first, who corralled the ball and threw to Featherston to get Pinckard out.

    The seventh inning proved to be adventuresome after the line out as Mitchell walked Ludy. The Frogs went to the bullpen and Crichton looked like he was out of the inning, but an error allowed Baylor’s Max Muncy to reach, putting the tying runs on base. He rebounded from the error getting Joey Hainsfurther to pop out to short to end the inning. After the error, Crichton retired the remaining seven batters that came to the plate.

    TCU improves to 3-1 on the season. The Frogs return home for a weekend series against nationally-ranked Cal State Fullerton beginning Friday night. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. at Lupton Stadium.

    Game Notes

    The Frogs won for the first time in Waco since April 8, 2008 when they took a 4-3 decision over the Bears.

    Baylor has not scored on TCU in the last 18 innings pitched. The Frogs handed Baylor a 9-0 defeat in the NCAA Fort Worth Regional Championship on June 6.

    Jantzen Witte, Brance Rivera and Jimmie Pharr have all hit safely in each of the four games of this season.

    TCU has limited opponents to seven runs this season.