It seems that Miami baseball thrives at home but struggles on the road.
The RedHawks dropped two of three in a three-game series this past weekend. The University of Alabama at Birmingham beat Miami, 5-2, on Friday and defeated it again, 8-6, on Saturday. But the RedHawks brought home an 8-6 win in Sunday’s series finale.
UAB’s pitching struggled in the series finale with multiple hit-by-pitches, walks and opportunities to load the bases, securing a win for the RedHawks.
Junior outfielder, and rising star player, Cristian Tejada was on a hitting streak with three singles, one triple and one home run over the weekend.
Senior infielder Will Vogelgesang had two hits in this series, and senior star infielder Landon Stephens hit a single, a double and a triple. These two players lead the team in batting average at .400, but Stephens pulled ahead of Vogelgesang in hits with 14.
The RedHawks bring the hits to the game, but they also bring the errors with them
In Friday’s game, UAB scored its five runs in the first, fourth and sixth innings, but the RedHawks brought the heat in the eighth inning to avoid a shutout.
In the eighth inning, freshman third baseman Brian Zapp singled, and junior catcher Nate Stolze doubled shortly after. Then, Tejada singled and brought in Miami’s first run of the game. Vogelgesang brought in the second run on a bunt single.
But those two runs came late in the game and UAB took advantage of some fielding errors from the RedHawks.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, sophomore starting pitcher Sam Bachman gave up three singles, and UAB scored on the third. Then, the two remaining UAB players on base scored on an error from junior shortstop Tyler Wardwell and another error from Stolze.
The Blazers’ other two runs came from scoring on a wild pitch in the first inning and a homer in the sixth.
Miami and UAB play chase
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In Saturday’s game, Miami scored a total of five runs in the third and fourth innings, but UAB kept up with the RedHawks throughout the game.
In the top of the third inning, redshirt senior outfielder Kyle Winkler singled and advanced to second base as Tejada reached first on an error by UAB’s shortstop. Stephens and sophomore designated hitter Cole Andrews drove in Winkler and Tejada on singles.
With two runs on the scoreboard for the RedHawks, UAB fought back. With a single, a double and two RBIs from groundouts, the Blazers tied the score at the end of the third.
The RedHawks came back with three more runs in the top of the fourth inning. Stolze and Zapp both walked to get the RedHawks on board. After a groundout from Winkler, Stolze and Zapp scored on Tejada’s single. Tejada then stole second base and advanced to third on a passed ball. Vogelgesang drove him in on a single.
UAB scored two more runs with a single, a walk, an RBI single, another single and a score on an error by Miami’s shortstop in the bottom of the fourth. In the fifth inning, junior pitcher Logan Schmitt gave up five hits while UAB gained four runs, taking the lead.
The RedHawks managed to score one more run in the seventh inning on two doubles from senior first baseman Charlie Harrigan and Stolze.
The RedHawks earned their first win on the road
The Blazers led, 6-1, after a grand salami in the first inning and a two-run dinger in the third. But with some four-pitch walks and hit-by-pitches, the RedHawks were able to secure a win in the series finale.
In the third inning, Wardwell walked on four pitches and advanced to second on a balk. Junior left fielder Parker Massman was hit by a pitch and Tejada singled to load the bases. Wardwell scored on Vogelgesang’s sac fly.
In the fourth inning, Harrigan and redshirt freshman Stephen Krause both received four-pitch walks. Zapp also walked and loaded the bases again. Harrigan scored on a fielder’s choice.
In the fifth inning, Tejada started Miami hot with a triple. Vogelgesang was hit by a pitch and later scored on a wild pitch, after Landon Stephens doubled and drove in Tejada. Stephens was driven in by a sac fly from Andrews.
In the sixth inning, Massman was hit by a pitch, Tejada walked on a full count and Vogelgesang was also hit by a pitch to load the bases one more time. Landon Stephens tripled and brought Vogelgesang and Tejada to home plate.
Tejada finished the game off with a one-run homer in the eighth inning.
Miami returns home to face Wright State at 6 p.m. on Tuesday. The RedHawks also host a three-game series against Milwaukee this upcoming weekend. The first game is 5 p.m. on Friday, and they have a doubleheader starting at 1 p.m. on Saturday.