Most baseball fans will remember this story, but on July 24th, 2004 the Boston Red Sox were 8 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees and trailing the Yankees in the second game of a three game series in Fenway. A Bronson Arroyo pitch in the 6th inning plunked Alex Rodriguez, and a fight broke out following a few choice words between Rodriguez and Jason Varitek. The Red Sox fell behind 9-3 that day but managed to come back and win 11-10, sparking a season's second half that would culminate in Sox fans celebrating their first World Series title in 86 years.
On Friday night, Oklahoma right fielder Cody Reine came to the plate in the bottom of the 9th against Texas fireballer Corey Knebel with the Sooners trailing 5-4 and nobody on base. Knebel left a ball up and Reine powered it over the right field fence to tie the game. Reine flipped his bat, seemingly showing up Knebel, and Longhorn catcher Jacob Felts had some words Sooner catcher Tanner Toal. Knebel, annoyed at Reine's game tying celebration, yelled at the Sooner as he crossed home plate. Both benches emptied but no punches were thrown and the game continued without further issue, ending after Jonathan Walsh drove in a pair of runs in the 12th.
On Tuesday night's baseball broadcast our announcers claimed the Texas veterans were saying the bench was more fired up after Reine's bat flip faux pas than at any time since the 2009 championship series. And the results since the bat flip? 9-5, 9-4 and 9-1 victories and a Texas team whose outlook is far rosier than it was in the bottom of the 9th a week ago in Norman. Only time will tell if this was a season saving (making) bat flip or a blip in an otherwise dreary year.
Anyhow, the Horns begin a three game series in Manhattan tonight. Pitching matchups after the jump.
Apologies for the short preview as life got in the way. KSU dropped two of three to the Aggroids last weekend, scoring 15 runs on Friday but only four the rest of the weekend. All three games are on Fox College Sports, if you have it. A series win would be huge, so join us here to see if this new Texas baseball team stays with us.
PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
Friday, March 23, 2012 - 6:30 p.m. Central
Texas: RHP Nathan Thornhill (2-1, 3.21 ERA)
Kansas State: RHP Matt Applegate (1-2, 6.04 ERA)
Saturday, March 24, 2012 - 2 p.m. Central
Texas: RHP Ricky Jacquez (1-1-, 4.95 ERA)
Kansas State: LHP Joel Flattery (3-2, 4.88 ERA)
Sunday, March 25, 2012 - 1 p.m. Central
Texas: RHP Parker French (3-0, 3.45 ERA)
Kansas State: RHP Kayvon Bahramzadeh (3-1, 4.56 ERA)