Canes fall below .500 after lackluster pitching performance

Daniel Federman pitched
Daniel Federman allowed five runs and four hits through three innings of work on 72 pitches as Miami's starter in the loss. Photo credit: Josh Halper

Miami had all week to think about last weekend’s series loss to Virginia Tech and how to move on from it.

But if what happened at Doak Field at Dail Park Friday afternoon reflects Miami’s fortunes throughout the rest of the weekend or beyond, the No. 6 Hurricanes are in trouble.

There was a moderate breeze all afternoon at North Carolina State’s home park in Raleigh, N.C. It may have been a factor in the number of home runs hit, mostly by the No. 24 Wolfpack (4-4,1-3 ACC). But UM’s pitching won’t be looked upon favorably when many fans take their first peek at the postgame box.

Miami (3-4, 1-3 ACC)—who came into the series opening looking for more offensive production—looked like it was getting just that early in Friday’s 11-5 loss to N.C. State.

The Hurricanes scored a run in each of their first two turns at bat and added three in the fourth. But they were unable to match NC State’s subsequent offensive explosion, which saw ten runs by the home team in the third through fifth innings. Miami didn’t score at all after the fourth.

UM hit just .129 as a team, compared to .286 by the Wolfpack. Miami also batted a measly 1-13 with runners in scoring position and committed four errors throughout the matchup.

Starting pitcher Daniel Federman was not effective Friday. He allowed five runs, three earned, four hits and two walks while striking out two Wolfpack hitters. The fourth-year righty also allowed two home runs, which foreshadowed the remainder of the contest. Federman made it through just three innings before his outing ended after throwing 72 pitches.

Jake Garland relieved Federman in the fourth and similarly failed to find rhythm. The righty was entered into a high-scoring but still tied game, before surrendering six unanswered runs. He was pulled after one and 2/3 innings pitched. Alex McFarlane, Alex Munroe and Andrew Walters finished the contest for the UM.

Miami opened the scoring in the first inning when Adrian Del Castillo hit a sacrifice fly to center field, driving in Jordan Lala from third base. The bottom half of the first saw Lala drop a ball in front of the left field wall, allowing NC State’s Tyler McDonough to reach third base and then score on a strikeout turned wild pitch.

Tony Jenkins made it 2-1 Miami in the second with an RBI groundout that scored Alex Toral.

The Wolfpack hung a crocked number in the third, scoring four runs and taking a 5-2 lead. McDonough hit a home run off Federman on the first pitch of the frame, and Luca Tresh followed suit with his own homer in the next at bat. Jonny Butler scored on a J.T. Jerrett sacrifice fly later in the inning before Terrell Tatum became the second NC State player Friday to score on a wild pitch.

Jordan Lala hit a three-run homer in the top of the fourth to tie the game at five apiece. But the Wolfpack came back with four runs in the home half of the inning, buoyed by Jose Torres and Devonte Brown home runs (the latter of which was for two runs) and a Tresh RBI single. NC State finished the day with four total homers.

Torres had his second RBI in the fifth with a double to score Vojtech Mensik and scored himself later in the inning behind a McDonough groundout.

The Canes are back in action for Game 2 of the series Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. Freshman Alejandro Rosario will look to back up his shutout win a week ago when he takes the mound opposite Wolfpack hurler Sam Highfill.