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Oklahoma State Baseball Takes Two of Three from TCU



The Oklahoma State baseball team came into this weekend facing an identity crisis. Are they the team that got embarrassed by Texas Tech at home or are they a team with potential to host a regional for the third straight year?

I leave the weekend thinking the latter describes this team better after taking two of three from the No. 9 team in the country.

On Friday night, OSU got a look at the future of the Horned Frogs, freshman RHP/1B Luken Baker. This game was set up to be a pitchers’ duel of epic proportion with RHP Thomas Hatch on the mound for the Cowboys. Unfortunately, Baker was lifted from the game in the 2nd inning after experiencing discomfort in his throwing arm.

OSU would go on to tag the TCU bullpen for nine runs, but it was Hatch who shined the brightest. The redshirt sophomore turned in the first shutout of his young career, striking out 10 while only allowing six Horned Frogs to reach base. Hatch is now leading the team with a 1.72 ERA after his incredible performance in the 9-0 victory.

The Horned Frogs would bring their bats to Saturday’s contest, scoring five runs off OSU starter Trey Cobb. Control was a struggle for Cobb as he issued four walks before being lifted in the 5th inning. Cobb has failed to finish the 5th inning in three of his five starts during Big 12 play.

The Cowboys tried to spark a late rally with a three-run homer from Garrett Benge, but it was too little, too late as the Horned Frogs would take game two,11-6.

Coach Holliday had his team ready for an important series finale on Sunday. It all started in the 3rd inning when the Cowboys jumped on TCU starter Bryan Howard for eight runs. Conor Costello led off the inning with a single and also added a towering three-run home run to cap off the scoring for the inning.

Freshmen RHP Jensen Elliott showed that he can pitch in high pressure situations like facing a top-10 team in series finale. Elliott showed a good three-pitch mix early in the game and settled in nicely after the offensive onslaught in the 3rd. However, Elliott showed signs of fatigue in the 6th and four more runs were added to his final line.

RHP Tyler Buffett allowed two runs in three innings but still earned his seventh save of 2016, which is good for second in the Big 12.

After an impressive series win, the Cowboys now sit at 9-6 in conference and only trail TCU by a game for second place. Texas is also sits at 9-6 in league play, but the tie will be broken when the Cowboys head to Austin next weekend.

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With an RPI sitting at 25, OSU is within striking distance to host a regional with less than a month remaining in the regular season. With the toughest part of the schedule already behind them, the Cowboys will have a favorable road if they want to bring a regional to Allie. P yet again.

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