#17 M baseball completes 3-game sweep of Binghamton

Submitted by Alton on February 17th, 2019 at 2:21 PM

Michigan's opening weekend went as well as it could have, with 3 straight wins over the Binghamton Bearcats.

Friday's game ended 10-0, with a combined shutout from Junior ace Tommy Henry (6 innings) and redshirt Freshman Isaiah Paige.  First Baseman Jimmy Kerr went 3-for-5 with a home run and 3 RBI's.

Saturday was a little too close for comfort, but Michigan pulled off a 5-4 win behind 8 great innings from Karl Kauffmann, who only allowed 3 hits and 1 earned run but was victimized by 4 infield errors by Michigan.  Two singles helped along by a passed ball & a wild pitch scored the winning run for Michigan, and highly regarded Freshman Willie Weiss from Portland, Oregon, picked up 3 strikeouts in the 9th to earn the save.

Sunday was back to Friday's form for Michigan,with a 12-2 win.  Catcher Joe Donovan picked up 3 RBIs with a 2-run HR and a sacrifice fly.  Starting pitcher Jeff Criswell got the win for Michigan.

The top performer at the plate for the weekend was probably Sophomore shortstop Jack Blomgren, who was 5-for-9 with 5 RBI.  The biggest concern was probably Michigan's gloves.  Michigan made 7 infield errors this weekend--6 of them at third base.  This is out of character for what was generally a very good fielding team last season.

Next week is a 3-game series at The Citadel, who finished outside the top 200 in RPI last season.  This is where Michigan needs to keep accumulating wins, leading in to a very very tough 8-game trip through the Los Angeles area.

Comments

rob f

February 17th, 2019 at 2:50 PM ^

#17?

Considering that southern teams have a HUGE advantage all the way around in college baseball, #17 in the country is a damn good starting point to move up from.

Alton

February 17th, 2019 at 2:58 PM ^

There are a ridiculous number of baseball polls for some reason, I found six.  I admit I did "cherry pick" the best one.  Michigan is in the top 25 in 5 of the 6 and in the top 40 in all 6.  The most honest thing to do would probably have been to use the most prominent one--the USA Today poll.  But here they all are..

d1baseball.com:  #17

Perfect Game:  #19

Baseball America:  #20

NCBWA:  #23

USA Today:  #25

Collegiate Baseball:  #39

D1baseball.com also does weekly bracketology, and their preseason projection had Michigan hosting a regional.

Clarence Boddicker

February 17th, 2019 at 4:20 PM ^

No surprise on the glove issues. How many times have they gotten to play outside as compared to a Southern team? Love what the bats did though. You know the pitching is there and the gloves will come around. If the boys can hit they'll get post-season love.

Wolverine Devotee

February 17th, 2019 at 6:19 PM ^

Gotta find offense. Pitching is doing all it can.

1 lousy run against Louisville (who we beat 6-0 on Friday) and 2 against North Carolina isn't gonna win games. 

It's been the adage since the Sierras left. We just haven't had consistent bats.

It'll be good enough to win the B1G, though. We have a very talented team that just has to find itself on offense. The pitching is there. Freshman pitcher Alex Storako is a very pleasant surprise. We have a #2 pitching option now.

Hucklebyforpresident

February 17th, 2019 at 6:18 PM ^

This pitching staff could be very good. Good start this weekend! Criswell was outstanding at the end of last year in the setup role and now looks to be a solid #3 starter. Is the freshman from Oregon positioned to close games? Looking forward to following these guys! Thanks for the post.

Alton

February 17th, 2019 at 6:38 PM ^

Agreed about the pitching staff.  You need 2 top-line starters to make an impact nationally, and Henry & Kauffmann look like they could fill those roles.  

As far as Willie Weiss (the Freshman from Oregon) is concerned, I don't think he will be the closer, although I could be wrong.

I would look for him to get a couple of bullpen appearances in February but then about 4-5 starts in March when the schedule calls for a 4-man rotation.  When they go back down to 3 regular starters in April, it could end up being Criswell or Weiss as the #3, with the other one going to the bullpen as the setup/"long reliever"--the guy who comes in during the 5th, 6th or 7th inning of a close game and maybe pitches the rest of the game or maybe pitches through the 8th and makes way for the closer.  They don't do that with MLB bullpens, but you see it in college all of the time with a promising Freshman.