Late surge puts baseball over the top against Middle Tennessee

Michael DeVito, Contributing Writer

On Tuesday night at Toyota Field in Huntsville, Alabama, the Alabama Crimson Tide defeated the Middle Tennessee State University Blue Raiders 10-4 as a late offensive performance pulled the Crimson Tide ahead.  

Right-handed pitcher Jacob McNairy made his sixth start of the season. McNairy worked quickly in the early innings of the game, cursing with good command on his pitches early on. Producing athree three-up, three-down innings with six strikeouts to start his night.  

In the bottom of the second inning, the Alabama offense put pressure on Middle Tennessee right hander Jalen Wirtz with runners on the corners with two outs. However, on a double steal attempt, Ed Johnson was caught in a run down between third and home on the basepaths and was picked off, taking the bat away from Tommy Seidl.  

After cruising early on, McNairy found himself in trouble in the fourth, surrendering a three-run home run and putting the Crimson Tide down three. The Blue Raiders would follow with an RBI base hit putting them up by four. McNairy got himself out of the fourth with a 1-6-3 double play. McNairy would not return for the fifth inning, his final line was 4.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 6K. He was replaced by Zane Probst. 

It did not take long for the Alabama offense to find its way back into the game. An explosive bottom of the fourth saw the Crimson Tide score four off RBIs from William Hamiter, Ed Johnson, Tommy Seidl, and Mac Guscette, who tied the game with a sac fly. The Crimson Tide knocked the Blue Raiders starter Wirtz out in the fourth.  

Andrew Pinckney gave the Crimson Tide the lead in the bottom of the sixth with a solo home run. Pinckney’s home run was the only action in the sixth as another pick off and strikeout would end the Tide sixth.  

In the bottom half of the eighth, the Crimson Tide cashed in five insurance runs as they took advantage of a bases-loaded, no-out situation. With just base hits and walks, Alabama took a small ball style which saw them pull ahead with a comfortable lead going to the ninth. Alabama began to pull away in the bottom half of the eighth allowing Alton Davis II to slam the door shut on the Blue Raiders in the top of the ninth.  

“The atmosphere here tonight was awesome, it was electric,” head coach Brad Bohannon said. “The place was packed, and the Trash Pandas put on an absolute first-class event. This was an awesome experience for our kids, and we cannot get back soon enough. I want to thank everyone involved with getting us up here and the Bama fans for showing out and supporting us tonight.”  

Alabama will travel to Fayetteville, Arkansas, to play the No. 6 Arkansas Razorbacks in its third SEC series of the year while still on the hunt for its first series win.  

Questions or comments? Email Blake Byler (Sports Editor) at [email protected]