Ypsilanti, Mich. — The saying goes something like this- if you be patient long enough good things should happen and you will have good fortune.
Eastern Michigan University open up the weekend series against Ball State University waiting for the arrival of the umpires assigned to the game, who were delayed for 30 minutes because of a traffic jam on the expressway.
Ball State University baseball coach Alex Marconi might have wished for more time because the Eagles did not waste any time and got on the scoreboard early and often in route to defeating the Cardinals 13-1, Friday night, April 29, 2011 under the lights at the coziest corner in the Mid-American Conference the home of the Eagles Oestrike Stadium.
Eastern Michigan University baseball coach Jay Alexander said after the game he feared that his team would come out flat against Ball State University after the colossal comeback Tuesday afternoon April 26, 2011 at Michigan State University.
The Eagles were trailing the Spartans by 10 runs before tying the ballgame and winning in the 12th inning 17-15 but Alexander said his squad reassured him that the situation would stay under control.
“It tell us and to ourselves we can win and that is to our advantage,” Alexander said about his team’s mental aspect of the game. “I though that we were flat, and these kids said ‘coach we got it and that we are all right!’ and I thought starting the game at 6:30 when were ready at six was going to hurt us but these guys are ready to go!”
Eastern Michigan University starting pitcher Robert Wendzicki did not wait either because he came out of the bullpen after his warm up tosses and he went to work. He finished eight strong innings giving up just one earned run, five hits, getting three strike outs and walking just one Cardinal batter while getting his fourth win of the season.
“First pitch strikes, he got a low umpire and he adjusted to the umpire right away and that helped him a lot,” Alexander said about Wendzicki’s pitching performance. “He was consistent the umpire for both teams and Robert was able to take advantage of it.”
Leading the offense and defense for the Eagles second baseman Zack Leonard who continues to keep adding to his record book entry as the Eastern Michigan University hit king.
Leonard finished the game 3 of 4 with scoring three runs and knocking in three runs and he is making plays at his position.
“His ability to hit the ball, his ability to play defense this guy has turned it up a notch,” Alexander said about his second baseman. “He has been out standing the last seven or eight games. He is phenomenal!”
Eastern set the pace in the first inning by scoring twice and then in the fourth inning put the game out of reach by sending 11 batters to the plate and scoring seven runs. Chasing Cardinal starter Derek Grabner out of the game after just throwing three and two thirds of an inning.
Marconi went to the bullpen often using four relief pitchers for the Cardinals looking for some one to put out the blaze and get Ball State out of the trouble and finish the game. Go back to the hotel and come back Saturday for a fresh start and a new day.
The series against Ball State University continues April 30 , 2011 Saturday afternoon at the cozy corner were the Eagles call Oestrike Stadium home and the welcome mat will be rolled out for the alumni returning to Oestrike Stadium. The first pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.
Alexander and his squad will be taking care of business and will be hoping to show the Cardinals a bad time.
“Stay the course I am always hard on the guys and make sure they are ready,” Alexander said after the game before leaving the field. “They can have fun but it is after we win but until then it is all about business.”
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.