Sophomore catcher Adrian DelCastillo led the consensus top-five Miami baseball team to a sweep over Rutgers this weekend to begin the season. The Hurricanes used the live bats and solid starting pitching that is projected for them this season.
The Miami baseball team used a dominant mix of hitting and pitching to sweet Rutgers in a three-game series to begin the 2020 season. After a 2-0 victory in the season opener on Friday night, the Hurricanes outscored the Scarlet Knights 21-8 in the final two games of the series both completed on Sunday afternoon.
Brian Van Belle, a rare redshirt senior in college baseball had a dominant performance in the opener for the Hurricanes. The preseason all-American candidate pitched six innings, allowed four hits and had 10 strikeouts without a walk as the Miami baseball team outlasted Rutgers 2-1.
Sophomore catcher Adrian Del Castillo had a two-RBI single in the third inning that held up in the victory. Rutgers first-baseman Chris Brito hit an eighth-inning home run to account for the lone run for the Scarlet Knights. Harry Rutkowski was the hard-luck loser for Rutgers. Rutkowski allowed two earned runs in five innings.
Junior Daniel Federman recorded the last four outs to preserve the first win of the season for the Miami baseball team. Eight of the nine Hurricanes in the order had hits. Sophomore left fielder Jordan Lala went 0-4 with two strikeouts as the only player in the Miami lineup to go hitless.
Brought out the 🧹🧹🧹! pic.twitter.com/fHYEBYJtjs
— Canes Baseball (@CanesBaseball) February 16, 2020
Game two of the Rutgers-Miami baseball series had to be played over two days. The game was suspended because of rain in Saturday night with Miami holding a 7-2 lead with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning. The Hurricanes finished off game two by adding a run to defeat the Scarlet Knights 8-2.
Del Castillo went 3-4 with two home runs, three RBIs and three runs scored. A Gabe Rivera grand slam in the seventh inning extended the Hurricanes lead to 7-2. J.P. Gates added a solo shot (much) later in the seventh inning on Sunday after play resumed. Junior Chris McMahon continued dominant starting pitching in game two.
McMahon pitched six innings, allowing five hits, two runs, both earned with a walk and nine strikeouts. Albert Maury Jr. and Alex McFarlane pitched the last two combining to allow one hit and striking out four. Gates and Anthony Vilar added multi-hit games for the Hurricanes.
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In the regularly scheduled game on Sunday, Miami bolted out to an 8-0 lead after three innings. That lead was expanded to 12-1 after seven before Rutgers crept back into the game with a five-run eighth inning. A three-run home run by Mike Nyisztor was reduced to a two-runs single Rutgers eighth.
Nyisztor passed Rutgers’ second baseman Kevin Walsh on the bases during his homerun trot causing him to be out. It ultimately did not matter in the outcome of the game. It is a mistake that just cannot happen. Miami tacked on a solo run in the bottom of the eighth inning to cap the scoring in a 13-6 victory.
Slade Cecconi provided Miami with its third straight outstanding start on Sunday. Cecconi had a no-hitter for 5.2 innings. The right-hander pitched six innings allowing two hits, one run, one earned with one walk and eight strikeouts. Vilar was the hitting star for Miami in the series finale.
The Hurricanes shortstop was 2-5 with two runs scored and three RBIs. Del Castillo got Miami on the board first for the third straight game with an RBI single in the first inning. For the first time this season, Miami did not hit a home run. The Hurricanes host Kent State on Wednesday and Florida in three-game series next weekend.