BOWLING GREEN, Ohio —- Bowling Green State University put together all the three phases that Falcon baseball coach Danny Schmitz searches for during each game plus he added one more ingredient and the most helpful – the wind that always blows through the Warren Steller Field.
It measures 345 down each line and 405 in center field but with the prevailing wind that gust up toward 20 miles per hour the dimension of the field shortens dramatically and Stellar Field becomes a hitter’s paradise.
Bowling Green University offense attacked the Eagles starting pitcher Corey Chaffins for seven runs and seven hits including two home runs that got caught up in breeze and sailed into the next county. The Falcons handed the Eagles their first conference lost of the season 13-5 under a stormy sky that blanket northeast Ohio.
“We had a little bit of a better effort today in all of the phases,” Schmitz said after the game. “Nick Bruns our starting pitcher did a nice job and battled and got us into the sixth inning and Ross Gerdeman our reliever came in and did a real nice job and was able to shut the door today.”
Bruns went five and one-third of an inning giving up all of the five runs scored by the Eagles and nine hits; he struck out seven and did not walk a batter for his second win of the season.
Gerdeman came into the game with bases loaded and with just one out in the top of the sixth inning but he got Eastern Michigan University first baseman Kyle Klein to hit a bouncing ball to third base that turned into the weridest doublr play.
Falcons’ third baseman Frank Berry scooped up the in-between hop and stepped on the bag to force Eagles’ shortstop Tucker Rubino at the base and then Berry threw the ball toward the plate to Bowling Green’s catcher Ryan Schaller who applied the tag on Eagles’ runner third baseman Ben Magsig for the third out of the inning.
“We did not pitch well at all and that is very disappointing,” Eastern Michigan University baseball coach Jay Alexander said before getting on the team’s bus. “Disappointing outing by our starter and he is one of our better guys. We made one error and that was by a pitcher.”
Chaffins gave up eight hits, walked four and hit a batter with a pitch before Alexander replaced him with Collin Taylor in the sixth inning.
Taylor struggled on the mound with his pitches and with the wind walking just two and striking out four but he gave up six runs with four being earned in three innings of work. He made a wide throw to second base on a sacrifice attempt laid down by Falcons’ centerfielder Andrew Kubuski making the only error of the day by the Eagle defense.
“We walked a lot of guys, we got behind a lot of guys anybody can hit when you got 2-0, 3-0 or 3-1,” Alexander said. “I can come up and hit the ball!”
The star spangled banner in center field caught the wind and straighten out as the wind blew across the outfield inside Steller Field giving the batters a welcome ally but the pitchers have cause to curse the wind the ball carries very well especially toward right center and right fields.
The weather at Weller Field plays an important part of a baseball game, the wind never quits and a team is never safe with a lead.
“You know when you got the flag gusting out that plays a factor there are a lot different variables factors that play into it too,” Alexander said as he describes the weather conditions at Steller Field. “You are never out of it as a team, I think we quit today and that is disappointing.”
Alexander said his team had some bad at bats and the Eagles did not take scoring chances and capitalize by scoring runs and leaving the base loaded deflated the comeback effort.
Sunday afternoon at Steller Field the Eagles will be looking for the win that will take the weekend series, Alexander said he would be happy if the Eagles could win two out of three from the Falcons in the series.
“Tomorrow is the series decider and that is what counts, you got to win the series, Alexander said at the gate before leaving the field. “If you tell me that we can win two out of three every weekend I’ll take it.”
Alexander said the Eagles could feel that the game got out of hand and that happens to a young ball team but as a coach it his job and his coaching staff to get the Eagles back on the right track.
Sunday’s afternoon baseball game at Warren Steller Field will begin at 1 p.m.
About the Author
Written by Mel Suiter
Graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2002 and have been working as a beat writer for The Ypsilanti Courier covering Eastern Michigan University football and men's basketball during my school career and after graduation. I like the Mid-American Conference and the rest of the mid-major conferences.