Sun Devil baseball swept by Cal, ASU has lost five straight

ASU’s struggles continue on the road at UC Berkeley

As the Sun Devils slipped in the Pac-12 standings with a rough start to conference play, ASU (12-18, 2-10 Pac-12) went on the road and was swept by the Cal Bears.

The losses mark five straight now for ASU and were characterized this weekend by struggles with starting pitching. The Sun Devils nearly rallied late on both Friday and Saturday, but ultimately fell to Cal (15-14, 7-6 Pac-12) in all three games.

Game One

As has been the case all season, junior Eli Lingos took the bump for ASU on Friday night to start game one of the series. Though Lingos has been relatively steady this year, he lasted just two thirds of an inning, allowing two runs on four hits with no walks, no strike outs and one home run.

Head coach Tracy Smith brought in senior right-hander Eder Erives — who started the season as an arm in the back end of the bullpen — to pitch five innings. He allowed five runs on seven hits with four walks.

Sophomores righties Reagan Todd and Chris Isbell also pitched in relief on Friday.

The Sun Devils were held to just one run by Cal’s freshman starting pitcher, Jared Horn. The right-hander tossed seven innings and allowed just three hits and no walks, striking out five.

In the ninth, the tide began to turn.

The Sun Devils rallied to score five runs in the top of the ninth inning, thanks in part to doubles from freshmen Carter Aldrete and Sam Ferri.

Still, it wasn’t enough and the Sun Devils eventually fell to Cal 9-6.

Game Two

Freshman left-hander Chaz Montoya has worked his way into a Saturday starting role for ASU, after starting the season as — like Erives — and end-of-the-game guy. But unlike his first couple of starts, Montoya struggled on Saturday.

Montoya went five innings, allowing six earned runs on eight hits and five walks. He fanned five hitters.

Freshman right-hander Alec Marsh pitched the rest of the game after Montoya’s exit, allowing only one run.

As they did on Friday, the Sun Devils threatened to come back again on Saturday when they scored three runs in the sixth inning and another in the seventh. That made it 6-4 Cal, but that’s where the score would remain.

Junior right-hander Andrew Shaps went 3-for-4 on the day and picked up two RBI.

Game Three

Sophomore outfielder Gage Canning had a strong weekend that started with a 3-for-4 performance on Friday.

That hitting prowess reappeared on Sunday.

The Sun Devils dropped the third and final game of the series on a day when pitching duties were handled completely by the bullpen. But in the midst of a frustrating defeat, Canning homered and went 2-for-4 at the plate with an RBI.

It was his first round-tripper of the season, and he finished the weekend 6-for-12 with two RBI.

This time, the Sun Devils didn’t appear to rally much at all. After Canning’s homer in the fifth, ASU just tacked on one more in the eighth on an RBI from Shapsw.

ASU fell to Cal, 10-2.

Up Next

The Sun Devils return home, looking to snap the losing streak with another midweek matchup against the UNLV Rebels. First pitch is on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m.

Reach the reporter at or follow @Mattjlayman on Twitter.

Like State Press Sports on Facebook and follow @statepresssport on Twitter.

Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.