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ASU Baseball: Late-inning offensive onslaught gives Sun Devils first sweep of season

Better late than never

Zac BonDurant

Sunday’s 17-10 win gave Arizona State (8-9) its first series sweep of the season. Back-to-back solid outings from its pitching staff gave ASU the advantage in its first two matchups with San Francisco (10-8), but it was the offense coming alive to help them in game three.

After falling behind by as many as five in the fifth inning, Arizona State outscored San Francisco 15-3 from innings six through eight because of their patience at the plate and opportunistic hitting.

Rough start for Meyer

Going into Sunday’s afternoon content, Tyler Meyer only allowed five runs in 17.1 innings this season. Within the first two innings, the Dons jumped on the sophomore for six runs. Two three-run homers (one in each inning and both with two outs) got San Francisco out to an early start.

Meyer’s day ended after a 29-pitch second inning where it seemed like every hitter worked a full count. His final line included five hits, two walks and one strikeout.

Will Levine took over hurling duties in the third and was masterful. He threw four innings, allowing five hits and striking out one. The only blemish for the junior righty was a solo home run he gave up in the top of the fifth.

Willie’s Warriors awake

Joe Lampe took the first pitch he saw for a ride to deep center to start the scoring in the bottom half of the first. Lampe later scored on an Ethan Long single in the third, but the ASU offense left seven runners on through the first five frames.

The Sun Devils entered their half of the sixth down 7-2. A flurry of walks and hit batters brought in two runs before Conor Davis smoked a base hit to left that brought in two more teammates. In total, ASU scored the four runs on one hit, three walks and two HBPs in the inning.

Down by one in the seventh, ASU batted around and took the lead. Michael Brueser pinch-hit for freshman Cam Magee and walked to load the bases yet again for Joe Lampe. Lampe walked in a run for the second time on the afternoon to tie the game at seven.

Sean McLain was thrown out at home to end the sixth inning rally earlier, but he had a chance to redeem himself in the seventh. With the bases juiced, he hit a chopper to first baseman Gabe Giosso (who homered in the fifth). Giosso fielded the ball looking to turn two but underthrew the shortstop, rolling the ball out in left field.

Two Sun Devils came around to score and gave ASU its first lead of the day.

Insurance!

Nine runs turned out to not be enough in securing a safe win. The Sun Devils should look to team up with some insurance companies for NIL deals after tacking on an additional eight runs in the late-stages.

In a day where the ball was flying out of the yard, the biggest blast came off the bat of Nate Baez in the eighth. A no-doubt grand slam sent Phoenix Muni into a frenzy as it put an exclamation point on game one.

Baez led the team with five RBIs after a 2-5 day at the plate. Conor Davis also added to team-high 16 RBIs with four in the series finale. Lampe and McLain also added three each.

Other notes

The Sun Devils scored five runs off of bases-loaded walks, which is a credit to their patience at the plate and not helping the struggling bullpen arms of the Dons.

Speaking of bullpen arms, ASU should have plenty for the second game of their double-header. Graham Osman and Christian Bodlovich were the only other arms used besides Levine and Meyer.

Osman picked up the win with his 1.1 innings of work and Bodlovich recorded his first save of the year after recording the final five outs of the game.

Arizona State will face Missouri in game two of their Sunday double-header to cap off a long weekend of baseball at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.