‘Canes rebound with much-needed sweep

Miami (9-6) swept Bethune-Cookman (3-11) in a three-game series under the recently installed lights at Mark Light Field.

After a tight 4-3 win in game one of the series, Miami won 9-1 on both Saturday and Sunday.

“It is always good to get a sweep,” said UM Head Coach Jim Morris. “We played soundly. It was good to get the young guys going.”

Friday’s game was delayed by rain at the start and suspended in the seventh with Miami ahead 4-3. Eddy Rodriguez led Miami with a three-run homerun in the second inning.

“I was hoping to get a good pitch to keep the inning alive,” Rodriguez said. “The pitcher [R.J. Rodriguez] left me a fastball away.”

First baseman Yonder Alonso paced both run-scoring innings with walks. Alonso’s 10 game hitting streak was snapped, but he helped the team by being patient in key situations.

“I just want to get on base any way I can and score runs,” Alonso said.

Carlos Gutierrez pitched seven innings and allowed three runs, but only two were earned. Gutierrez set a career high with nine strikeouts while only allowing five men to reach base.

Chris Perez pitched the final two innings on Saturday to pick up his third save on the season.

Later Saturday night, Miami got a strong pitching performance from Manny Miguelez. Miguelez pitched six scoreless innings and allowed one hit.

“I have known Manny and Carlos for three years and I have never seen either guy this dominant,” Alonso said. “They are overpowering hitters.”

A four-run inning in the second and fourth frames put Miami ahead for good. Roger Tomas sparked the second inning with a two-run triple. Blake Tekotte and Jemile Weeks scored on a dropped fly ball by Wildcats centerfielder Jose Ortiz off the bat of Jon Jay.

Rodriguez, Dennis Raben and Tekotte each drove in one run.

“I saw the ball a lot better; these lights are so much better than last year,” Tomas said.

Scott Maine pitched the final game on Sunday and allowed one run in five innings, picking up the first win of his UM career. Maine got into some early trouble by loading the bases with one out in the first inning. Maine got Chris Henault to hit a sacrifice fly to Jay in centerfield and struck out Nabil Sagbini to finish the inning.

“All three starters pitched well,” Morris said. “We are continuing to get better as the season goes along.”

Maine suffered a head injury from an off-season car accident, which limited his preparation for the season.

The Hurricanes take on the Florida Marlins in an exhibition game on Wednesday before Indiana visits Coral Gables for a three-game series this weekend.

Denis Brown can be contacted at dbrown@umsis.miami.edu.