Miami baseball encountered its second Atlantic Coast Conference series loss of the year against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, making it two series losses in the ACC out of the last three.
Aside from four total home runs hit Sunday, the No. 3-ranked Hurricanes encountered a pair of two-run losses before a convincing win in the series finale.
Although the Hurricanes saw their first-place lead in the ACC Coastal shrink to two games, here are some of the takeaways from the series…
1. A four-game losing streak is not a concern
Going into Sunday’s game, the Hurricanes were on the midst of a four-game skid which consisted of two losses to begin the series, a loss Tuesday to Stetson and a loss the Sunday before to Pittsburgh.
Following the team’s defeat against Stetson, Miami head coach Gino DiMare said the team had to regain focus, particularly on hitting, on what propelled it towards success during its 14-game win streak.
Sunday’s performance was indicative to the domination that the Hurricanes had earlier in the season, which resulted in such nation-long win streak and a national ranking as high as No. 2. A top-five result likely won’t favor UM again in the third-to-last week of its regular season, but a chance to build momentum arises without a midweek matchup.
2. The starting rotation struggled again
Sophomore starting pitcher Carson Palmquist had a decent game on Friday, but gave up two solo home runs that ended up being the difference in the 3-1 defeat. On Saturday, freshman starter Karson Ligon allowed five earned runs and hit two batters in the same inning while the bases were loaded. The scenario resulted in a run scoring and his night ending.
Sophomore Alejandro Rosario, meanwhile, was the one to break the trend Sunday, however, pitching five innings with only one earned run in Miami’s dominant win.
“I thought he threw really well,” DiMare said. “His command was really good and kept the ball down. He was able to work both sides of the plate, and that’s against a very good offensive team.”
If the two other starters can display more efficient outings, Miami has the potential to add less pressure on its lineup, including cleanup hitter Maxwell Romero Jr. who provided three home runs in a 6-for-13 weekend, and sweep more series.
3. Longest losing streak of the season is over
The losses built up, but UM got a sense of relief quickly by the middle innings in the series finale.
Sunday’s performance consisting of 12 RBI became a huge win, potentially translating into returned winning ways. Miami had four home runs and 16 hits and was able to score in four of the first five innings to command a 6-1 lead over halfway into the contest.
“When we get good pitches to hit, our guys can do damage with those pitches,” DiMare said. “It’s all about plate discipline and not chasing pitches out of the zone.”
The confidence-boosting win to close the series can carry over into next weekend when the Hurricanes take on visiting North Dakota State in a three-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Friday.