Texas Longhorns baseball (28-16) fell 8-1 to the Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns (27-14-1) Tuesday night in Sugar Land.
With Texas’ ninth inning Tyler Rand RBI single, the Longhorns have still yet to be shutout in the David Pierce era. Still, the negative seven run margin is the widest of the season, as the Longhorns’ worst loss prior to tonight was a 7-1 showing to Rice in February.
The Ragin’ Cajuns chased starter Blair Henley out of the game with a 2-0 lead and the bases loaded with one out in the second inning. Senior Lefty Jon Malmin then came on in relief, walked in a run, and then allowed a grand slam on a hanging curve ball to make the score 7-0 in the second.
After issuing another walk, Malmin was replaced by righty Jake McKenzie, who turned in a solid 3.2 scoreless innings. But it didn’t matter.
The Ragin’ Cajuns added another run in the seventh on a wild pitch strikeout by Connor Mayes to bring the score to 8-0.
With little offense, the ‘Horns essentially waved the white flag and got most of the veterans out of the game in favor of some younger reserves.
In the 8th, your Horns now look like this on defense:— Texas Baseball (@TexasBaseball) April 26, 2017
The ‘Horns were able to add one run after getting three straight aboard to start the ninth, but their comeback attempt was quickly stifled by Louisiana.
Some positives from the blowout were that Texas was able to save essential pitchers for this weekend’s series against Oklahoma State. The team also was able to keep starting position players healthy while giving some younger guys a chance at the plate.
I’d like to see more at-bats for freshmen like Andres Sosa, Trace Bucey (who had an at-bat in the eighth), and Austin Todd. Those guys, especially the first two, are far from proven commodities, but Texas may need a shake-up in the order to give the lineup some life.
Texas didn’t get a leadoff man aboard until a ninth inning walk. The ‘Horns had hit .246 as a team entering tonight.
The Longhorns must bounce back in Stillwater this weekend in a crucial Big 12 series with Oklahoma State. With Texas’ NCAA tournament hopes in jeopardy, the ‘Horns will need to show some resilience against the Cowboys on their home turf.