Sept. 24, 2013
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Week two of the Louisville baseball team's six-week full-squad fall workouts concluded with a pair of scrimmages last weekend at Jim Patterson Stadium.
The Cardinals opened the weekend on Friday afternoon with the Red squad earning a 3-1 victory in seven innings. On Saturday, Louisville followed the football team's 72-0 win over FIU next door at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium with a 10-inning scrimmage won by the Red squad, 8-6.
"It was another week of some good and some bad baseball. I challenged the players after Friday's scrimmage and they responded on Saturday," said Louisville head coach Dan McDonnell. "Hopefully, in week three, we will be more consistent in our effort and performance because that is a must in winning championships. We all need to show up every day ready to compete and get better."
The Cardinals are tentatively scheduled to host weekend scrimmages every week until the conclusion of full-squad workouts in mid-October. Dates and times for those future scrimmages as well as the annual Pizza Bowl series will be announced throughout the fall.
In Friday's opener, junior righthander Jared Ruxer had three strikeouts in three shutout innings, freshman lefty Robert Strader added three strikeouts allowing only an unearned run in two innings and junior righty Brandon Alphin added two shutout innings for the Red squad. For the Black team, sophomore righty Kyle Funkhouser had four strikeouts and allowed one run in three innings, while sophomore lefthander Jakson Deyer pitched two shutout innings with a strikeout.
On Saturday, senior lefty Cole Sturgeon had five strikeouts in two shutout innings of relief for the Red team, while junior righty Nick Burdi finished with two strikeouts while allowing an unearned run in one relief inning.
At the plate, Sturgeon was also impressive going 3-for-7 with a walk, an RBI and a run scored in the two games, while junior infielder Zach Lucas was 3-for-7 with an RBI, a run scored and two HBPs. Junior outfielder Mike White chipped in going 2-for-6 with a double, a walk, three RBI and a run scored in a pair of games.
In Friday's opener, freshman utility player Will Smith connected for a solo home run, while on Saturday, freshman outfielder Corey Ray was 4-for-5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored. Also on Saturday, junior infielder Grant Kay was 2-for-5 with two RBI and a run, junior infielder Sutton Whiting was 1-for-2 with three walks, two runs and two stolen bases and senior catcher Shane Crain was 1-for-3 with two RBI, one run and one walk.
About Louisville Baseball
Directed by head coach Dan McDonnell, who is entering his eighth season at the helm, Louisville returns 19 letterwinners from last year's squad, which won a school record 51 games, the program's fourth regular season conference title in five seasons and hosted NCAA postseason games for the fourth time. The Cardinals capped the season by defeating No. 2 national seed Vanderbilt in the Nashville Super Regional to clinch the program's second College World Series berth and a No. 8 national ranking.
Among the top returnees for Louisville for the 2014 season are senior captains and All-Conference standouts Jeff Gardner and Cole Sturgeon, junior righty pitcher and All-American Nick Burdi, All-Conference shortstop Sutton Whiting, senior catching duo Shane Crain and Kyle Gibson and Freshman All-American pitchers Kyle Funkhouser and Anthony Kidston. A strong group of experienced upperclassmen including the likes of infielders Alex Chittenden, Zach Lucas and Danny Rosenbaum, outfielder Mike White and pitchers Jared Ruxer, Kyle McGrath and Joe Filomeno are joined by a deep and talented set of newcomers setting the stage for an entertaining fall and spring on the baseball diamond for the Cardinals.
In his seven seasons guiding the Louisville baseball program, McDonnell has placed the Cardinals among the nation's elite with two College World Series berths, three NCAA Super Regional appearances, six NCAA Regional bids, four conference regular season titles, two conference tournament titles and 309 wins overall.