Aug 08, 2020
Fresno State junior outfielder Brody Russell swings at a pitch during last Sunday's conference game versus San Diego State. (Darlene Wendels/The Collegian)

Baseball: ‘Dogs top in-state rival, move into tie for third place

Fresno State junior outfielder Brody Russell swings at a pitch during last Sunday's conference game versus San Diego State. (Darlene Wendels/The Collegian)

Fresno State junior outfielder Brody Russell swings at a pitch during last Sunday’s conference game versus San Diego State. (Darlene Wendels/The Collegian)

The Fresno State baseball team (23-25, 13-11) won the season series against the San Jose State Spartans (12-36) over the weekend at Municipal Stadium in San Jose.

The ‘Dogs won two of the three games in the series, including Sunday’s game, which they won 3-0, to improve their Mountain West record to 13-11, putting them right behind New Mexico (13-10) for third place in the conference.

Freshman pitcher Ricky Thomas made the start on the mound for the ‘Dogs on Sunday, going 6 1/3 innings without giving up a run. Thomas gave up four hits and five walks in the outing but managed four strikeouts while facing 28 batters. Jimmy Lambert came in to relieve Thomas, and he finished out the game giving up four hits but no runs in 2 2/3 innings.

Fresno State got on the board in the top of the third inning with Korby Batesole’s single to center field driving in freshman outfielder Kenny Corey and sophomore outfielder Austin Guibor to spark a lead they would never relinquish in the outing.

The last run came in the seventh inning, when catcher Taylor Ward singled to second base, advanced to third base and scored on a fielder’s choice.

San Jose State 7, Fresno State 3

The Spartans managed to win Saturday’s game late after a two-out, four-run rally wrestled the game from the ‘Dogs.

The game was tied 3-3 at the bottom of the eighth inning, when a potential third out was taken away from the ‘Dogs. The Spartans plated three more runs in the game, putting them at a four-run lead they would hold onto for the rest of the game.

The redshirt freshman lefty Anthony Arias (1-2) took the mound for the ‘Dogs and gave up three runs, one walk and recorded a strikeout in four innings of work. No other pitcher for the ‘Dogs gave up an earned run in the game.

Tim Borst (4-4) took over for Arias and got the loss in the outing, giving up one hit and one unearned run in 3 2/3 innings of work. Casey Rodriguez replaced Borst but faced just one batter, walking him and letting a run score before getting pulled for Garrett Mundell who gave up two hits and two runs.

Four players came in for the ‘Dogs after the top of the fifth inning and managed to turn the game around a bit. Bulldogs Jesse Medrano, Brody Russell, McCarthy Tatum and Nick Warren were all substituted into the game, and three of those four got on base in their first plate appearances.

“Those guys that came in, in the middle, changed the game which is exactly what you want to happen,” said Fresno State head coach Mike Batesole.

Fresno State 4, San Jose State 0

Jake Shull threw a masterful one-hit, complete-game shutout to highlight the win for the ‘Dogs in the first match of the series Friday night. The hit came in the bottom of the fifth inning, when Spartans batter Michael Breen hit an infield single.

“Big pitches in big situations, and Dobby (Ryan Dobson) made a couple fantastic turns, and that’s how you play the game,” Batesole said. “You’re going to get yourself in and out of trouble, and if you do walk the leadoff man, you got to find a way to get out of it and we did.”

“I had no clue what was going on,” Shull said about throwing a no-hitter for five innings. “I focused just on going out there and making my pitches that I had to make. The defense out there — I trust in our fielders out there to make the plays behind me.”

Korby Batesole got on base with a walk in the top of the third, and put up the game’s first run after Taylor Tempel provided an RBI single and Dobson put down a sacrifice bunt to get Batesole across the plate. Austin Guibor hit a single to follow up the sacrifice bunt, and Ward got up to hit an RBI single to score Tempel and give the ‘Dogs a 2-0 lead early in the game, one they wouldn’t give up the rest of the game.

Tempel registered a career-high four hits in the outing, one of those being a two-run shot over the left-field wall.

The ‘Dogs will be back for a quick one-game home stand against Cal State Northridge on Tuesday at 6:35 p.m.

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