February 21, 2010 12:49:00 AM
STARKVILLE -- The much-heralded but untested freshman pitching class of the Mississippi State baseball showed why head coach John Cohen had no qualms about leaning on the newcomers this year.
In just the second game of the season, freshman starter Chris Stratton and freshman relievers Kendall Graveman and C.C Watson combined on a five-hit shutout to pitch Mississippi State past Rhode Island 9-0 on Saturday.
MSU (2-0) will host Rhode Island again at 1:30 p.m. today in the final game of the season-opening series.
Stratton turned in a gem of a start in his collegiate debut, allowing just four hits in six innings. He struck out six batters and walked two, but it was his ability to throw an effective breaking ball and not drop on the gun that impressed his coach.
"It''s 10 to 15 miles an hour off his fast ball so it''s really hard to see," Cohen said of Stratton''s curve ball. "It''s really difficult to take a freshman and say, ''Hey, we want you to work both sides of the plate and set some things up,'' and that''s what he did. That''s why he''s pitching on the weekends for us right now. He''s special, but I think in the future he''ll be really special."
Stratton''s performance marked the second-straight season an MSU pitcher earned a win his collegiate debut. Friday''s starter Nick Routt did it last year against North Florida.
"You have nerves in the beginning but once you get the first out, it''s all good," Stratton said. "Once you settle in, it''s just like every other game."
The Bulldogs roughed up Rhode Island starter Chris Pickering for four earned runs in two innings before Jim Foster brought in Ken Graveline in the third. Pickering got the loss and finished with three hits and two walks.
Pickering and Graveline worked a six-run Bulldogs third inning that saw Connor Powers hit his second home run of the game on just his third pitch.
Powers started off his day by blasting a first-pitch fast ball to Left Field Lounge in the first inning. Saturday night marked the seventh time Powers hit more than one homer in a game.
"I think he tried to elevate on one and just didn''t get up high enough," Powers said. "The other one he tried to go in and just didn''t get it in enough. The first one I didn''t think would go out, but the second one, on a day like this with good weather, I was hoping the backspin would carry it out."
Jonathan Ogden registered a sacrifice-fly RBI and Ryan Collins drove in a pair of runs with a lined-single to right field to cap the explosive third.
Collins finished 3 for 4 with two RBIs, while Powers was 3 for 5 with three RBIs and a pair of homers. Trey Johnson and Cody Freeman each finished with two hits for the Bulldogs.
Rhode Island (0-2) was led at the plate by Oliver Palmer, who went 2 for 4. The Rams did not register an extra-base hit.
While Mississippi State registered the rout, Cohen bemoaned a four-inning stretch that produced two hits and no runs. The Bulldogs struck out six times in that span.
"After that third inning, we just did not take very good swings and that''s a real concern to us," Cohen said. "But overall it''s a good day especially when your freshmen can get their feet wet and get some experience."
The Bulldogs will start Tyler Whitney today. The senior went 3-4 with a 5.18 ERA last season.
xfhfd commented at 3/2/2010 3:11:00 AM:
we are Professional with the highest quality service.on-line manufacturer supplies that wholesales all kinds ghd mk4 gold styler,These cheaper coatings wear off very quickly and cause more damage to the hair ghd hair straightener is the world's famous brands and wholesale chi hair straightener. Our cheap chi flat iron,To give consumers convenient discount ghd iv dark styler,at the same time care of everyone's hair.ghd mk4 black styler,Its use is very simple,in case of leakage will automatically power off to protection of everyone's personal safety ghd iv purple styling set.are popular all over the world with high quality,When the temperature reaches a maximum ghd hot pink iv styler,it will not stop flashing the lights, reminding everyone.competitive price,In addition, the design was very nice, very lightweight.fast delivery.Dry autumn, is the hair of the most vulnerable physiological periods.shop online for,Welcome to visite our website. http://www.hairupstyler.com/
dfger commented at 3/2/2010 3:14:00 AM:
We supply that wholesales all kinds cheap ghd hair straightener and ceramic hair irons are believed to be more gentle on the hair.discount chi hair straightener.on line.Our chi flat iron,Avatar is a 2009 American science fiction film written and directed by James Cameron ghd iv dark styler,Humans are engaged in mining Pandora's reserves of a precious mineral,wholesale ghd iv hot pink styler,are popular all over the world with high quality, competitive price, fast delivery.ghd iv purple styling set shop online for genuine & authentic hair straingtener,. It is an ideal tool for all your creative styling and finishing needs ghd mk4 black styler. Achieve a variety of looks and styles,ghd mk4 gold styler Welcome to visite our website. http://www.ghdhairon.com/
2. Extra practice time leads to playing time for Dear at MSU COLLEGE SPORTS
3. MSU women look to back lofty expectations COLLEGE SPORTS
5. Offensive line plays key role for Starkville Academy HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS