Baseball: Horns falter in Saturday's Game 2

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Baseball can be a cruel game.

Texas head coach Augie Garrido says it all the time. For evidence, look no further than Texas’ 9-2 loss to Stanford on Saturday, where it seemed nothing would go right for the Longhorns.

“This was a pretty cruel day,” Garrido said.

Cole Green got off to another slow start at home, allowing three runs in only two innings, the shortest outing of his career.

“I didn’t do anything that I normally do right, and it got to me,” Green said. “They’re a good club, and they came out and they beat us today.”

Stanford’s Stephen Piscotty’s RBI double in the first inning started the scoring for Stanford. The third baseman also scored in the inning, and finished the day 2-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs. Green’s day was done after throwing just 41 pitches, as Hoby Milner started the third inning for Texas.

“Cole didn’t keep the ball down in the strike zone and he didn’t have a strong presence on the mound,” Garrido said. “They rattled him.”

Texas couldn’t get its offense going until the third inning, when leadoff man Jordan Etier singled to right center, and Brandon Loy moved him to second with a sac bunt. With the heart of the lineup to bat, Mark Payton popped up to third base, Erich Weiss walked and Lucas Kephart grounded out to end the inning for Texas. The stranded runners were two out of ten for the Longhorns during the game, which hurt Texas’ chances of taking back momentum from the Cardinal.

“Some things really went in their direction, and they kept that going,” Garrido said. “They threw us off balance and we didn’t protect ourselves by coming right back offensively, and that’s what you have to do; you have to retaliate when things get going for the other team.”

Stanford added three more runs in the fifth inning, as Tyler Gaffney walked and Piscotty brought him home with his second RBI double of the game. Ben Clowe lined one into center field and Cohl Walla’s glove, but Walla dropped it, scoring Piscotty.

The error was one of five for Texas.

“It’s baseball,” Texas shortstop Brandon Loy said. “One of those days where nothing really goes right for you.”

Nobody knows that more than Texas third baseman Erich Weiss. The freshman committed three errors in the game, including two in the seventh inning. He let a ground ball get past him and then made a charging throw that brought Tant Shepherd off of first base to load the bases.

“Baseball’s not a fun game sometimes,” Loy said. “When that happens, the ball finds a way to find you.”

But Weiss followed his seventh inning with getting the final two outs of the eighth for Texas, the last by bare-handing the ball after it hit pitcher Kirby Bellow’s foot and throwing it to first base for the out.

“How many times did the ball find him in a row?” Garrido said. “How does this game know how to punish people like that? I believe he’ll be back tomorrow with a right attitude, and that’s how you really find out who your players are.”

Weiss finished the day 1-for-4 with a walk. He and the rest of the Longhorns will look to get off to a better start on Sunday, in the final game of the series with Stanford.