Mistakes haunt ASU baseball in loss to New Mexico State

The Sun Devils could not overcome two errors in a one run loss to the Aggies at home

Mistakes in the field and on the bases cost ASU baseball the game in an 8-7 loss to New Mexico State on Wednesday night at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.

The Sun Devils (17-23, 9-10 Pac-12) suffered a midweek loss after a sweep of Utah last weekend.

Sophomore left-hander Spencer Van Scoyoc started for ASU and cruised through the first two innings. But that was short lived, as the Aggies scored four runs on four hits in the third. Van Scoyoc hit two batters and issued a walk.

“I thought he was around the zone," Smith said. "He was making some pitches."

“We ran him back out there just to try to get the confidence level back up there, … but it’s just progress,” Smith said. “He has to continue to develop to be able to pitch at this level.”

With New Mexico State leading 4-1, the Sun Devils scored three runs in the bottom of the third to tie the game. Senior designated hitter Taylor Lane drew a walk with the bases loaded and after an RBI single by freshman left fielder Hunter Jump, freshman infielder Gage Workman was hit by a pitch to score the tying run.

But two errors by freshman first baseman Spencer Torkelson allowed the Aggies to retake the lead, 5-4, in the top of the fourth inning. 

“Just play catch, man,” Smith said. “It’s something we talk about … this game is a game of catch and throw. You have to play catch, and we didn’t do that effectively. (If we) had that out, that would’ve gotten us out of the inning.”

Following Torkelson's errors, freshman pitcher Brady Corrigan relieved Van Scoyoc. 

The Sun Devils had a chance to tie the game up in its half of the fourth. But after Torkelson was hit by a pitch, he was thrown out going first to third on a single. This would have put runners at the corners with nobody out. ASU ended up stranding two runners.

“I think that’s a tough play,” Smith said. “The ball initially gets by, so you make your read that you see it get by the first baseman, but unfortunately for us, it hit the umpire and stayed close enough where they could pick it up and throw him out.”

NMSU took control of the game in the top of the fifth, scoring three runs off Corrigan to lead 8-4.

ASU made a game out of the contest, scoring three runs in the seventh. Three straight hits to open the inning plated two runs, and a sac fly made it 8-7. 

Many Mistakes

In a one-run game against a team with eight hitters batting over .300, the Sun Devils could not afford mistakes. 

Two errors ultimately cost the Sun Devils at least one run and probably two. The offense did their best to get the team back in it, but Smith said you have to win with pitching and defense.

“We can’t keep relying on our offense to bail us out," Smith said. "That’s not how you win games."

Corrigan Hit Hard

With ASU within striking distance, Corrigan got hit hard for three runs in the fifth to break the game open. 

But instead of errors creating a big inning, Smith said an inability to put hitters away with two strikes hurt Corrigan, who dropped to 0-4 on the season.

“He was leaving balls over the middle of the plate, and you can’t do that,” Smith said. “(He’s a) young guy who will hopefully get better and continue to grow and learn.”

UP NEXT

ASU will travel to Corvallis to take on Oregon State for game one of a three game series on Friday at 5:35 p.m. PST.


Reach the reporter at jjacquez@asu.edu or follow @joejacquezaz on Twitter.

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


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