Hello Miami fans I'm out at The Light tonight for some live blogging during tonight's Super Regional showdown between your No. 1-ranked Hurricanes and Arizona. I'll be here live to provide updates as the game goes along once an inning (per NCAA rules).
But I'll also be chatting with any visitors during the game. We can talk about whatever you want -- Canes football, basketball, recruiting -- even summer movies, Family Guy and Lost. I don't care. Let's just have fun watching the game tonight (me in person) and you from home on ESPN. Game time is 7 p.m.
Interesting pregame notes... Miami is 21-5 versus the NCAA tournament field this year. Arizona relief pitcher Ryan Perry (drafted 21st overall on Thursday) has hit speeds of 100 miles per hour on his fastball this season... the Super Regional appearance is Arizona's first since 2004.
Just got a visit from the famous 86Cane and OcalaCane who made their way over to me to say hello. Great guys. Both had a great time at Titanic with a few other Canes fans before tonight's game. Be sure to check out Canespace after tonight's game for more chatting.
Tonight's starting pitchers: Miami - LHP Chris Hernandez (11-0, 2.55 ERA, 105 Ks, 15 BBs); Arizona - RHP Preston Guilmet (6-4, .429 ERA, 89 Ks, 20 BBs).
TOP 1st: Hernandez gave up a one-out single to Colt Sedbrook, but got two of the first three batters swinging before Jon Gaston smashed a long fly ball down the right field line that drifted foul that got the crowd here a little scared for a second. Two pitches later, Hernandez caught Sedbrook in a rundown at second for the final out of the inning.
BOTTOM 1st: After Blake Tekotte grounded out to second, Jemile Weeks broke out of his funk with a single up the middle. He then stole second before Guilmet got Yonder Alonso swinging at strike three. Mark Sobolewski then laced what looked like a double down the right field line. But it was half a foot foul. Sobolewski then struckout two pitches later. UM 0, Arizona 0.
TOP 2nd: Gaston drew a leadoff walk and was forced out at second on C.J. Ziegler's grounder to short. The relay throw for a double play by Ryan Jackson skipped in front of first baseman Yonder Alonso. But the scary moment was when Alonso was hit on the bridge of his nose with the ball. He was checked out by trainers and coach Jim Morris before remaining in the game. Three pitchers later, T.J. Steele blasts his 11th home run of the season way over the wall in left field to give Arizona a 2-0 lead. Hernandez gets out of the inning with a groundout and strikeout of the next two hitters.
BOTTOM 2nd: Guilmet maintains his early mastery -- getting Ryan Jackson to ground out to second, Dennis Raben on strikes and Dave DiNatale to ground out to third. Arizona 2, UM 0.
TOP 3rd: The first 1-2-3 inning for Hernandez, who gets Ortega to groundout to third, Valenzuela to fly out to center and Sedbrook to groundout to first.
BOTTOM 3rd: Adan Severino opens the inning with a line drive down the right field that gets scooped up by a fan near the bullpen for a ground rule double. Severino eventual moves to third and home on groundouts by Yasmani Grandal and Tekotte. The inning ends with a Weeks' failed bunt attempt. Arizona 2, UM 1.
TOP 4th: Another 1-2-3 inning for Hernandez, this time 2 Ks and a ground out of the 3-4-5 Zona hitters.
BOTTOM 4th: Yonder walks to start the inning. After Sobolewski laces another shot down the line that drifts foul, he flies out to right for the first out of the inning. Alonso eventually moves to third on a Jackson groundout to third when he hustles around second on a fielder's choice. All the hustle didn't matter. Three pitchers later, Dennis Raben smacked his 10th home run of the season to left field to put the Canes up 3-2. The inning ends with a lot more noise when DiNatale's long fly to left is tracked down at the warning track. UM 3, Arizona 2.
TOP 5th: How about Captain Chris? Another 1-2-3 inning. He's settled down. 11 retired in a row for Hernandez.
BOTTOM 5th: Severino and the Canes catch a break when strike three turns into a 'Zona throwing error that leaves Severino standing on second. Following a sacrifice bunt by Yasmani Grandal that moved Severino to third, Tekotte drew a four pitch walk bringing Weeks to the plate. That's when Arizona coach Andy Lopez went to the mound and brought in Ryan Perry. After Weeks struckout swinging, the hard-throwing right hander intentionally walked Alonso to load the bases. But the Canes fail to score when Perry blows a fastball past Sobolewski to end the inning. UM 3, Arizona 2.
TOP 6th: Make that 14 in a row for Hernandez, who despite several called time outs by Zona hitters to break up his rhythm retired Ortega, Valenzuela and Sedbrook in order.
BOTTOM 6th: After Ryan bounced out to second to start the inning, Raben Mohawk Mojo produced a double to the center field wall. DiNatale then walks to bring Severino up with one out and runners on first and second. Both runners then advance on a long fly ball to right field. But once again the Canes leave runners in scoring position when Alonso flies out to right to end the inning. UM 3, Arizona 2.
TOP 7th: The streak ends for Hernandez when Glenn reaches on a slow dribbler down the third base line. Glenn then advances to second on a passed ball with nobody out. Hernandez faces a tough at-bat with Gaston, before finally striking him out swinging for the first out. That's when Morris takes him out and brings in reliever Kyle Bellamy. One pitch later there are two outs when Ziegler flies out to left. It brings Steele (the guy who belted the two run homer off Hernandez) up. Bellamy starts him off with two strikes before a wild pitch allows Glenn to advance to third. With the tying run 90 feet away, Bellamy can't get of the jam. Steele singles to left to bring the tying run home. Pinch hitter Bobby Coyle then ends the inning by bouncing out to shortstop.
BOTTOM 7th: Tekotte draws a leadoff walk and gets bunted over on a sacrifice by Weeks. Alonso then gets intentionally walked for third time, bringing Sobolewski to the plate. He flies out to right bringing Jackson the dish. A passed ball moves the runners over and brings the count to 2-2. But the inning ends when Jackson grounds out to first base. UM 3, Arizona 3.
TOP 8th: Bellamy starts the eighth by striking out Childs looking and getting Ortega to swing and miss at strike three. And then he ends by getting Valenzuela to swing at junk in the dirt before Grandal applies the tag.
BOTTOM 8th: Raben starts the bottom of the eighth by driving a 3-2 pitch 399 feet to centerfield. The problem is he needed two more feet. Instead, Steele settled under it for the first out of the inning. DiNatale then struckout and Severino popped out to short to end the inning. UM 3, Arizona 3.
TOP 9th: Bellamy starts the ninth by fanning Sedbrook and Glenn. Then, he brings the crowd to his feet when he gets Gaston to an 0-2 count. But Gaston battles back and singles off the glove of Alonso at first to keep the inning alive. Ziegler then falls behind 0-2 and the Miami crowd once again stands. Five foul balls, four throws to first, three balls, one passed ball and one called strike later, Ziegler finally ends the inning by standing and watching strike three blow by him.
BOTTOM 9th: Grandal opens the ninth with a double to center. Jonathan Weislow comes in to pinch run for him and Arizona coach Andy Lopez goes to his bullpen again, bringing in right-hander Jason Stoffel. Tekotte tries to lay down a bunt and it goes airborne -- but foul. Tekotte then gets called out on strikes for a check swing, drawing boos from the crowd. Jemile Weeks then gets hit by a 1-1 fastball, bringing Alonso to the plate. Alonso drills a line drive to the gap in right center field. But it gets snared by Steele. Weislow, who was rounding third when the ball is caught, gets doubled up at second to end the inning. UM 3, Arizona 3.
TOP 10th: Miami brings in Carlos Gutierrez to pitch and Jason Hagerty to catch. Gutierrez strikes out Steele then gets Coyle to fly out to left before striking out Childs swinging. Miami's pitching staff has done a great job tonight.
BOTTOM 10th: Canes go down 1-2-3 with Sobolewski lining out to first, Jackson striking out looking and Raben swinging. UM 3, Arizona 3.
TOP 11th: Ortega and Fon go down on strikes before Sedbrook reaches when he gets in the back with a fastball. That brings up No. 3 hitter Brad Glenn who singles to left. Before Gaston comes up, pitching coach JD Arteaga goes to the mound. Gaston then sends a 1-1 pitch over the wall in right field that bounces off the light post and gives Arizona a 6-3 lead. Miami's bullpen has 10 strikeouts tonight. But maybe its not enough. Ziegler grounds out to shortstop to end the inning.
BOTTOM 11th: DiNatale and Severino strike out. Haggerty ends the game with a groundout to the mound. Arizona 6, UM 3.