ASU baseball no-hit into the 7th, loses to Arizona

The Sun Devils did not have a single baserunner until Andrew Snow singled in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Arizona right-hander Kevin Ginkel pitched a perfect game into the seventh and stymied ASU with a complete-game shutout on Tuesday night, ending the Sun Devils' three-game winning streak. 

Ginkel gave up just two singles and struck out seven while not issuing a single walk on 91 total pitches as Arizona (27-14) defeated ASU (23-15) 8-0 on Rick Monday Night

He relied heavily on his fastball because his secondary pitches were not consistent throughout the night. Sophomore second baseman Andrew Snow broke up the perfect game and freshman right fielder Gage Canning had the other single, but the two hits were a moot point by that point. 

"I'm a little frustrated with our players because he had one pitch," head coach Tracy Smith said. "We should be good enough that a one-pitch pitcher should not handle us for nine innings, so that's my disappointment from an offensive standpoint."

Regardless, Smith said perhaps the biggest story of the night was ASU's poor pitching and defense. The Sun Devils committed three errors — two led to runs — and used six pitchers. 

He said the formula for winning is good pitching and defense, noting his team did not have either. ASU gave up 16 hits.

"We don't have a lot of swing-and-miss pitching," Smith said. "We have to make plays. There is no overanalyzing for me. We didn't pitch and we didn't play defense. Therefore, we got our tails kicked. Pretty simple."

Sophomore lefty Reagan Todd started on the mound for ASU, but gave up three runs — two earned — in 3 1/3 innings of work and 72 pitches. Although he pitched 5 2/3 fewer innings than his Arizona counterpart, Todd threw just 19 fewer pitches than Ginkel. 

Arizona scored a first-inning run on Ryan Aguilar's RBI single. In the top of the fourth, Arizona designated hitter JJ Matijevic's RBI single drove in Jared Olivia, who reached on a fielding error by Snow. Todd then hit a batter, effectively ending his night. 

Freshman right-hander James Ryan relieved him and gave up an RBI single on his first pitch, pushing the Arizona lead to 3-0. Cody Ramer led off the fifth with a single and Bobby Dalbec crushed a two-run home run to center field to extend the lead. 

Freshman Connor Higgins replaced Ryan, who gave up two runs in 2 1/3 innings of relief. Higgins tossed 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. 

ASU's third error of the night extended the eighth inning as junior catcher Brian Serven's errant throw to first base on a dropped third strike with two outs allowed another run to score, making it 6-0 Wildcats. Then, an infield single tacked on another run in the inning for Arizona. 

After Stadler gave up a pair of unearned runs in the eighth, Liam Jenkins issued a walk and threw just nine pitches in his first-career appearance before sophomore lefty Tucker Baca finished the ninth. 

ASU is still only 1.5 games out of first place in the Pac-12 standings, which can be viewed as a positive when considering the rollercoaster ride this season has been for the group. 

Smith said he has run the scenario through his head a lot and thinks about how a team that has sustained so many injuries on top of having a new outfield and an overhauled starting rotation has a real chance to win the conference. 

"I think our guys truly believe we can do that too," he said. "I don't think it's a stretch. I think when we've got the right guys on the mound and we're playing defense behind them, we've proven we can beat anybody. We're looking forward to the last few weeks in conference."

After taking two of three from Cal at home and sweeping Stanford on the road, the Sun Devils will host New Mexico in their next weekend series. 

While the series is out of conference, Smith mentioned that a good showing will be an RPI-booster and strengthen ASU's case for a regional bid. 

"I think there should some anger, there should be some disappointment, maybe even some self-reflection right now, but when they walk out that door, we got to start thinking about how we're going to get better and win some games this weekend."


Reach the reporter at Justin.Toscano@asu.edu or on Twitter @justintoscano3.

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