Before pitching the deciding game against TCU in the super regional, Taylor Jungmann was asked about his nerves.
"Nerves? I don't get nervous, man," he said. Apparently not.
He’s been fantastic the whole series (6 pitches last night excluded), and he was brilliant last night. He stayed down and away against LSU’s lefthanders with his two seam fastball. The Tigers are not a team that’s going to walk their way to a win, and Jungmann frustrated them by not giving them anything to hit. Spotting his fastball and also getting them to chase it when he threw it high, the dude didn’t get rattled. He got stronger as the game went on. Three wins for the series with a 0.59 ERA.
Texas jumped on the Tigers early, and it’s a good thing they did because they went scoreless the final six innings. Against some pretty mediocre pitchers. I’m sure Texas would have liked for LSU to have to bring in tomorrow’s starter, Anthony Ranaudo, but it didn’t happen. No matter. They’ve hit every other ace they’ve faced this series.
What can you say about Russell Moldenhauer? Tying a CWS record with his fourth home run. The guy has finally regained his swing after struggling the whole year and recovering from offseason surgery. The Angels thought he was the best hitter in Texas when they drafted him in the 3rd round out of high school, and people seem to forget that he hit .350 last year. And he hit his home run against a lefty meaning Garrido might not take him out against future matchups.
Preston Clark hit a home run and drove in another with a single. Connor Rowe's first pitch swinging paid off again with an RBI double, and the previously listless Brandon Belt drove in Texas' first run of the game.
Texas again struggled in the field. Brandon Loy got lazy on what looked like the same ground ball twice, and confusion at who should cover first resulted in another error. Jungmann is an excellent fielding pitcher so Travis Tucker shouldn’t have been covering. Both Jungmann and Brandon Belt looked surprised that he was. Michael Torres was great in the field though with eight assists including a big second out in the 9th. He handled a lot of choppers that were far from routine. Kevin Keyes needs to stay on his feet in right. No more jumping or diving.
It all comes down to one game. Texas should have already won the series. They know it. LSU knows it. LSU has to like their chances with a rested Ranaudo and Matty Ott. Texas also likes their chances with a rested Cole Green. But at this point it doesn’t matter. Any and every pitcher is an option.
The pressure is on LSU at this point. This was the first game they've lost in over a month. How will they respond? You know that Garrido will have Texas relaxed and ready.