MOBILE, Ala. — I had a hard time trying to find three things that didn’t go so well for either team this weekend.
This was such a well-played series between teams that didn’t want to give any ground to the other in the standings. It had everything, from dominant pitching to incredible defense to ridiculously clutch hitting. Baseball can be tedious to some but, as one South Alabama media relations employee said, “I’d love coming to work if every game was like this.”
Let’s break it down, including the few rough edges.
The Cajuns were four games back in the SBC race after Friday, and one more loss would’ve ended their chance at a regular-season title. But they somehow didn’t die Saturday despite multiple blows to the head, and they went on to win the series. Who knows where it can go from here? I’m saying there’s a chance.
2. IT’S NOT HOW YOU FALL ...
Hunter Kasuls has been in the “Three Down” portion of this column a couple of times for some defensive miscues, and I thought he’d be there again after back-to-back errors loaded the bases Saturday. Then he turned a clutch inning-ending double play. It was nice to see some resilience from the freshman.
3. ... IT’S HOW YOU GET BACK UP
Eric Carter got to the park late Friday because he accepted Outstanding Graduate honors in Lafayette. Then he gave up the game-winning hit in the ninth. He was frustrated that night, and he ran his frustration off on a treadmill. Sunday? He preserved the series by striking out the side in the ninth. Outstanding indeed.
1. COSTLY E4ROR
While the Cajuns are glad to still have a shot at a title, they could’ve had a much easier route with a sweep — and, honestly, they could’ve gotten one. Stefan Trosclair muffed what he would probably call a routine catch in foul territory Friday, and it led to two runs. The Cajuns lost by one in the bottom of the ninth. Ouch.
2. WHAT JUST HAPPENED?
Someone check USA’s bats for Kryptonite, because they certainly made Superman closer Dylan Moore look mortal Saturday night. Moore hadn’t given up a run since mid-March and hadn’t given up a home run all season. The Jags tagged him for two homers — and almost a game-tying third in the 11th.
3. GUNNED DOWN
Cajuns third-base coach Jeremy Talbot got greedy when he waved Brenn Conrad around on Joe Robbins’ single to right in the sixth inning Friday. Conrad got thrown out by a mile, keeping it a tie game. If Conrad held, the Cajuns would’ve had first and third with one out. He didn’t, and they lost by one.
THE LIGHTER SIDE
USELESS STATE OF THE WEEKEND
10: Combining Saturday and Sunday’s games, the Cajuns used 10 players in the No. 2 spot in the lineup.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND
“Sooner or later, the odds are pretty good that he’s not going to blow three saves in one night.”
— Tony Robichaux after Dylan Moore’s adventurous Saturday
PRESS-BOX FOOD CONSUMED
Since I recently turned 30, I apparently decided to eat like I was a 10-year-old this weekend. Three days, three chicken strip baskets. I’ll get back to adult food pursuits soon.