Texas Baseball Looks to Get Back On Track. Again.

Score by Innings                    R  H  E
-------------------------------------------
Arkansas Razorbacks. 200 140 000 - 7 8 1
Texas Longhorns..... 011 001 000 - 3 7 1
-------------------------------------------

Texas lost to Arkansas 7-3 on Sunday and are now 2-7 over their last 9 games and 4-7 on the year. There's not a lot to say other than that Texas got beat by a good team, and that Texas is not a good team right now. As Augie Garrido mentioned during Sunday's broadcast, it may be a while before we see Texas play baseball at a level to which we've grown accustomed. There are two positives to take away from last weekend, aside from the nice victory over Rice. First, the Texas bats appear to be waking up. While the Horns weren't great offensively on Sunday, they were competent throughout the weekend, hitting .297 as a team and scoring 18 runs. And second, the Horns won't play a team approaching Rice or Arkansas's talent level until the end of April when the Agroids play their final series with Texas.

Some quick words about the season to date after the jump.

Now that we're 20% into the season, it's probably safe for Texas fans to start viewing 2012 as another reset. The 2002 national championship team had a relatively smooth transition thanks to the presence of Huston Street and the addition of current major leaguer JP Howell to the mix. The hangover after 2005 national championship squad took three seasons to correct as the departure of Kyle McCulloch and J. Brent Cox led to three straight years of poor pitching that didn't begin to be corrected until the emergence of Chance Ruffin at Missouri in 2008.

Welcome to 2008. That season Brandon Workman and Cole Green combined to 111.1 innings with ERAs of 5.06 and 5.28 respectively. Their presence in 2009 and 2010 made Omaha runs possible, and the Horns got as close as a team can get to winning a title in 2009 without being fitted for rings. The loss of Sam Stafford and Cohl Walla in the preseason means the Horns will have the rest of the year to find the next Chance Ruffin. John Curtiss, Rickey Jacquez, Parker French and Dillon Peters all have pretty poor numbers so far this season, but their development into star pitchers will determine Texas's success in 2013 and beyond. It may suck, but the development of arms in 2008 and addition of Taylor Jungmann in 2009 led Texas to Omaha.

The Horns may be as far away from Omaha as they've been in quite some time this season, but the bottom line is they're just a bit of luck in the draft and continued development of the freshman pitchers away from competing for a title again.

Anyhow, that's the long way of saying Texas plays Dallas Baptist today at 4 PM on the Longhorn Network and you can join us here for an open thread.


PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUPS
Tuesday, March 6, 2012 - 4 p.m. Central
Texas: LHP Dillon Peters (0-0, 7.11 ERA)
DBU: RHP Jordan Staples (0-0, 4.76 ERA)

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