UCLA Baseball Comes Back to Beat Beavers in Extras on Walk-Off Balk
Today, the Bruins seek the series win against Oregon State.
The UCLA baseball team (24-13, 11-8) had, perhaps, its most rousing victory of the season last night at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Facing the Oregon State Beavers (28-13, 10-6), the Bruins scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to force extra frames and, then, won on a walk-off balk in the bottom of the tenth, setting off an on-field Bruin celebration.
The loss knocked the Beavers down to fifth in the conference. It could also be a huge confidence builder down the stretch for a Bruin team that has underperformed a bit this season.
At 6 pm PT this evening, UCLA will seek the series win when the squads clash again. As is the case for this entire series, the game will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks and is available on Pac-12.com and the Pac-12 Now app.
Last Time Out
For most of the game last night, it was a pitchers’ duel. UCLA’s Zach Pettway allowed one run on four hits in six innings and Oregon State’s Kevin Abel two-hit the Bruins through 4-1/3 innings, allowing only one run and striking out eight. Abel allowed six walks, which was part of the reason that he was given what might appear to be an early hook.
The Beavers struck first in the top of the second inning with a two-out RBI infield single to make the contest 1-0. The Bruins countered to tie the game, 1-1, when a walk, an error, and a two-out single by Josh Hahn scored Matt McLain in the bottom of the fourth inning.
It would stay that way until the top of the eighth inning, with Oregon State reliever Will Frisch holding UCLA hitless over 2-2/3 innings and UCLA’s Adrian Chaidez holding down the fort in the seventh inning.
In the eighth, Oregon State’s first six batters reached base. The first three scored. The Beavers started off with a walk and a single. A full count double by the three-hole hitter, Andy Armstrong, scored one run, and then a triple by the clean up hitter, Garrett Forrester, drove in two more. OSU was up 4-1.
On came Daniel Colwell, who walked the next two batters. But Calwell induced a critical double play to neuter the threat, after that, a fly ball to right ended the inning.
The Beavers would ding Colwell for a run in the top of the eighth inning, pushing the lead to 5-1, care of a single and a one-out double.
Down four runs, things looked bleak for the Bruins in the bottom of the ninth inning, especially after Kyle Karros lined out to start the inning. But Kevin Kendall, Kyle Cuellar, and Matt McLain hit back-to-back-to-back singles, loaded the bases and giving UCLA life. After falling behind in the count 1-2, JT Schwartz had a great plate appearance to draw a walk and score a run, cutting the lead to 5-2.
With the bases still loaded, Oregon State made a pitching change and immediately UCLA was down to its last out when Mikey Perez struck out. Head Coach John Savage pinch-hit Jake Filby for Jake Moberg, who unsuccessfully pinch-hit earlier in the game.
It was the right call.
Filby stroked a deep ball to right center, scoring three Bruins, tying the game, and ending up on second base with a double. Noah Cardenas popped out to end the inning, stranding the prospective game-winning run on second and sending the game into extra innings.
On came Bruin closer Max Rajcic for UCLA in the tenth and, although he allowed a walk and a hit with one out, he struck out the next Beaver, Matthew Gretler, who already had two hits on the night. Rajcic then ended the inning, by inducing a ground out to McLain with a full count.
In the bottom of the tenth inning, UCLA loaded the bases on a single by Karros, a walk to Kendall, and a sacrifice bunt by Cuellar, putting runners on second and third with one out. OSU walked McLain intentionally to load the bases and set up a potentially inning-ending double play.
But, with Freshman Deylan Reyes at the plate, Beaver reliever Josh Washburn was called for a balk, scoring Karros, ending the game in bizarre fashion and setting off a wild Bruin celebration.
This evening, junior righty Sean Mullen (7-1, 2.72 ERA), will take the hill for the Bruins and the Beavers will counter with the freshman southpaw Cooper Hjerpe (2-3, 3.12 ERA).
UCLA Baseball (24-13, 11-8)
Opponent: Oregon State Beavers (28-13, 10-6)
Game Time: 6:00 pm PT, Saturday, May 1, 2021
Where: Jackie Robinson Stadium, Los Angeles, CA
Live TV: Pac-12 Networks National, Los Angeles and Oregon
Live Audio: uclabruins.com
Live Stream: Pac-12.com and the Pac-12 Now app
Live Stats: UCLA StatBroadcast
UCLA - Sean Mullen, RHP, Jr. (7-1, 2.72 ERA)
OSU - Cooper Hjerpe, LHP, Fr. (2-3, 3.12 ERA)
This is your UCLA baseball vs. Oregon State game two open thread.