Each walk in a baseball game invariably slows the game down, each foul ball takes up time, and every time hitters leave the batter’s box, minutes tick by.
Baseball games have historically been long, and Boston College baseball’s series closer against Louisville was no exception to the trend. BC’s matchup with the Cardinals (19–5, 6–0 Atlantic Coast) on Sunday totaled nearly four hours, just for BC (9–14, 1–8) to give up nine runs in the eighth inning and fall to No. 18 Louisville 15–1.
Following three consecutive losses to Virginia the previous weekend, the Eagles bounced back with wins against Northeastern and Sacred Heart. But BC dropped two more games to No. 18 Louisville on its home turf on Friday and Saturday and finished the weekend with a blowout loss.
Louisville, unranked in national preseason polls, has outperformed projections. The Cardinals have won 16 of their last 18 games and swept their series against No. 1 Notre Dame.
Mason Pelio started on the mound against the ACC-leading Cardinals and reached triple digits with extra life on his fastball.
But Louisville’s Dalton Rushing caught a piece of one in the bottom of the first and launched his second homer of the series and seventh of the year over the fence. From there, the Cardinals wouldn’t let Pelio—or any of BC’s rotation—get away with mistakes.
Pelio pitched 2.2 innings and recorded four earned runs on three hits and four walks in that time. Louisville’s starting pitcher Riley Phillips went unscathed. Phillips, who entered Sunday’s contest with 27 strikeouts and seven walks on a 2.52 ERA, registered seven strikeouts and zero earned runs in seven innings.
Entering the eighth inning, BC pitchers had tallied more walks than strikeouts, but the Eagles only trailed by four runs. By the end of the inning, BC was down 13 runs.
Louisville’s late-game rally started when BC pitcher Aidan Crowley relieved Evan Moore. Crowley walked Cameron Masterman, the first batter he faced.
Jack Payton was hit by a pitch, advancing Masterman to second. Crowley walked Levi Usher to advance the runners, and with bases loaded, Crowley hit Logan Beard, walking in a run with one out.
BC could only hold off Louisville’s offense for so long, and the Cardinals broke the game wide open. Payton scored on a wild pitch that sent Beard to second and Usher to third. Louisville followed that series with a hitting spree, which included singles from Isaac Humphrey and Ben Metzinger, doubles from Christian Knapczyk and Payton, and a homer from Masterman. The Cardinals scored nine runs in the inning.
Louisville tacked on another two runs in the ninth inning, putting the hours-long affair to a close.
Featured Image by Caroline Cannon / Heights Staff