Coral Gables, FL - No. 5 Florida State (26-5, 9-5 ACC) suffered its second shutout loss of the season in falling to Miami (21-13, 6-8 ACC) 6-0 Saturday night on Mark Light Field inside Alex Rodriguez Park.
The win for the Hurricanes snapped a four-game losing streak to their in-state rivals, while it evened the all-time series at 63-63-4 when the two schools square-off in Coral Gables. The shutout was the first for Miami in the series since blanking the Seminoles 10-0 back on April 14, 2004 in Coral Gables.
The Seminoles could not solve Bryan Radziewski all night long as the junior southpaw went 7.0 strong innings scattering just four hits as he improved to 4-1, while lowering his season ERA to 0.78. Radziewski allowed just two runners past first base and both times it was DJ Stewart, who reached third base in the fourth inning and got to second in the sixth.
“Well there is just no question, if you saw it you know the story of the game,” said head coach Mike Martin. “Radziewski just did a great job tonight. It’s as good a job as I have seen done on us all here. You really got to tip your hat to him, he shut us out.
“Over and over he threw his breaking ball for strikes. He kept his poise out there on the mound the whole time. He just dominated us.”
Eric Whaley worked the final two innings to preserve the win. Whaley allowed two hits and two walks, while striking out one.
Stewart was the only Seminole to record multiple hits Saturday night finishing the game 2-for-3 with a pair of singles and a walk. Ladson Montgomery, Brett Knief, Giovanny Alfonzo and John Nogowski each picked up a hit in the loss.
FSU starter Brandon Leibrandt suffered the loss and fell to 4-3 on the year after working 4.0 plus innings Saturday night. The sophomore southpaw allowed five runs on seven hits as he walked three and struck out three.
“He is just a control pitcher, there is no doubt about it,” said Martin on Leibrandt. “He cannot walk three guys in four innings of play. He is still going to be fine. We are going to keep giving him the ball.”
Brandon Johnson worked an inning in relief and was charged with a run on a hit as he walked one.
Jameis Winston tied a career-high with 3.0 innings of work retiring all nine batters that he faced. The freshman right hander struck out one while throwing just 34 pitches. Winston struck out the first batter that he faced and then recorded five groundouts and three fly outs.
“Jameis really was impressive,” said Martin. “Here is a guy that hasn’t pitched since Tuesday and he did a good job out there.”
Miami wasted very little time cracking the scoreboard in game two with a run in the first to take an early 1-0 lead. Chris Barr led off the inning with a single to center off Leibrandt, moved to second on a sac-bunt by Alex Hernandez and scored on an RBI single up the middle off the bat of Chantz Mack.
The Hurricanes added to their lead in the third on a two-out solo home run by Hernandez. The junior second baseman took a 2-1 pitch from Leibrandt out of the park to left for his first career home run to give Miami a 2-0 advantage.
Stewart opened the top of the fourth with a single up the middle but was left stranded at third after Radziewski recorded a strikeout and back-to-back groundouts to maintain Miami’s two-run lead.
Miami pushed its lead to 3-0 in the fourth on another two-out hit this time off the bat of Tyler Palmer. With runners at first and second following an infield single and a walk, Palmer sent a base hit back up the middle. Seth Miller came up firing to the plate but Alex San Juan slid just in front of the tag by Stephen McGee to give the Hurricanes a three-run cushion.
The Hurricanes threw a three-spot on the board in the bottom of the fifth to take a commanding 6-0 lead. Barr and Hernandez reached on a walk and a bunt single, respectively, to open the inning chasing Leibrandt from the game. Johnson came on and after recording the first out of the inning on a sac-bunt by Mack, loaded the bases by intentionally walking San Juan.
Two pitches later, the Canes scored their first run of the inning when Johnson hit Michael Broad on the leg to bring home Barr. Designated hitter David Thompson followed with a two-run single to center but Miller threw on to third to get Broad for the second out of the inning and in the process picked up his sixth outfield assist of the season. Johnson got Dale Carey to fly out to center to end the inning.
Florida State and Miami will return to the field for the third and final game of the series on Sunday, April 7 at 12:00 noon. The game will broadcast live on ESPNU.
Fans can listen to the game on the All-Access player and locally on 100.7 FM. As always, Seminole fans can follow the Noles on twitter @FSU_Baseball and remember to like the Seminoles on Facebook (www.facebook.com/FSUBaseball). Live stats for the game will be available via gametracker.