Hello and welcome to another edition of First Pitch! In this installment, I’ll look into the final home series of the season against Texas and the loss to Dallas Baptist. This team has lost two in a row and three of the last four games. This is an awful time for this team to be declining as the Big 12 tournament and the NCAA tournament are just over the horizon. Without further ado, let’s dive in!
The pitching woes on this team are not as bad as I first thought. Davis Martin simply had a below average day for him and that is okay in my eyes.
The main pitching concern I have is on Sunday and the midweek game. Sundays have been awful for this team, and I believe it starts with the pitching staff. Coach Tadlock is not putting these pitchers in their correct roles and that concerns me. Ryan Shetter starting, okay with me as he was arguably the second-best starting pitcher on the team last year.
What I am concerned with is the way he only went three innings. I know Tadlock doesn’t like his pitchers going more than 3 innings a lot of the time but I think that is the main problem. Davis Martin and Caleb Kilian can both give you 5 or more innings of solid work. This team needs to find that guy for Sunday’s games. John McMillon could do it but I believe he has effectively been washed out of the starting rotation and will likely be placed in Ryan Shetter’s previous role, the long closer.
Where to now?
Now that the Big 12 title is lost, many are probably wondering where this team needs to aim for next. I think that winning the Big 12 tournament would be a good start. It’s a double elimination tournament, so everyone will play two games.
It looks like the Red Raiders will finish third in the Big 12 standings by the end of the year. It looks like Tech will get either Baylor or TCU in the first round of the tournament.
This first game will be imperative to win this game, so I think Caleb Kilian should start this game. He gives the team the best chance to win and he also gives this team confidence. I personally want Jose Quezada to get a chance to start, that is why I will pencil him in as the game two starter. He is one of the best relief pitchers on the team and can give the team four or even five great innings of pitching. I think he pairs well with Ryan Shetter or John McMillon coming out of the bullpen to finish the game for him.
If we can win both of these games, I see Davis Martin starting game three for the team, he along with Kilian give this team confidence and can also pitch six innings for you.
That’s all I have for you this week! How do you think this team will fare in the Big 12 tournament and in the NCAA tournament for that matter? Let us know in the comment section below!