BYU Baseball: Cougars getting good work from No. 1 and No. 2 starters
The BYU baseball team came through with three last-at-bat victories in last week’s home sweep of Santa Clara.
Lost a bit in the celebration were two excellent outings on the mound by junior right-hander Jordan Wood and senior lefty Hayden Rogers.
As often happens in close games, neither Wood nor Rogers ended up with the victory in come-from-behind wins. But both starters were terrific in their appearances. Wood went eight innings in the opener, allowing just four hits and an unearned run while striking out five. The Cougars won that game 2-1 when Brock Hale came home from third on a Santa Clara error in the bottom of the ninth. Freshman Drew Zimmerman, who pitched to three batters in the top of the ninth, ended up with the win.
Rogers threw 5.1 innings in the second game of the series, giving up just four hits and two runs. The Cougars got a walk-off home run from Daniel Schneemann in the bottom of the 10th for a 6-4 victory, with Bo Burrup pitching the ninth for the win.
This season, Wood is 2-2 with a 2.64 ERA while Rogers is 4-2 with an ERA of 5.40.
Wood will start Game 1 of BYU’s series at Portland on Thursday and Rogers will take the mound for Game 2 on Friday. The third starter is still TBA. Junior Blake Inouye started the past two Game 3’s for BYU but lasted just two innings Friday against Santa Clara. Relievers Kenny Saenz, Justin Sterner and Rhett Parkinson combined for seven innings and allowed just two runs to keep the Cougars close. BYU won it 6-5 by scoring three runs in the eighth and Parkinson shut down the Broncos in the top of the ninth for the win.
The BYU-Portland series will feature two of the league’s top offensive players. The Pilots’ Beau Brundage leads the WCC in batting average (.400), hits (48) and on-base percentage (.482). The Cougars’ Brock Hale (.342, seven home runs, 23 RBI) leads the league in slugging percentage at .624.