Ryan Ortiz Delivers as Oregon State Baseball Defeat Missouri State
March 13, 2009
PORTLAND, Ore. - Ryan Ortiz went 2-for-5 and drove in the go-ahead runs in the eighth inning as the 23rd-ranked Oregon State baseball team won a back-and-forth contest against the Missouri State, 8-7, in the first of a three-game series on Friday night.
Ortiz came to the plate in the eighth inning with a third-inning RBI already to his name. With the bases loaded and only one out, the Beavers' catcher pulled the second pitch he saw from Missouri State (4-10) pitcher Cody Aycock down the left-field line to drive in the tying and go-ahead runs.
Oregon State (8-3) pitcher James Nygren gave up one hit, struck out two, and came away with his first win of the season after pitching two scoreless innings in relief of starter Tyler Waldron, who struck out a season-high six hitters in six innings of work. Closer Kevin Rhoderick came on in the ninth to record his fourth save in five attempts this season.
Beavers' second basemen John Tommasini had a career day at the plate, tying a career-high with four hits, which he last achieved against San Diego State during the 2008 season. Third basemen Stefen Romero also had a big day for the Beavers, going 2-for-5 and scoring three runs. His home run in the fourth inning was his second of the season.
Seven of the nine starters for Oregon State recorded hits in the game, while six of those players crossed the plate. Oregon State pitching struck out eight Missouri State hitters and walked just three.
The Beaver bats came alive in the third, as Romero came through with a one-out single, followed by an error on Bears' second basemen Kevin Medrano that allowed Jared Norris to reach base. Ortiz then delivered with a single to right field to give the Beavers their first lead of the game. OSU's bats extended the inning, as RBI singles by Logan Boyd and Tommasini gave them a 3-0 lead.
Waldron opened the game with a strikeout of Bears' centerfielder Aaron Conway. He then proceeded to retire nine of the first ten hitters of the game before running into trouble in the top half of the fourth. Missouri State used four hits, a walk, and an error by leftfielder John Wallace to even the score at 3-3.
Romero did not let the tie last long. With two outs in the bottom of the fourth, Romero launched a 1-1 pitch over the wall in left-centerfield to put the Beavers up 4-3. Missouri State came right back in the top of the fifth when Chris Playter connected with his third single of the game to drive in two and take the 5-4 lead.
Despite giving up nine hits through the first five innings, Waldron was able to hold the Bears to singles until catcher Dallas Hord hit two-run home run in the sixth to extend their lead to 7-4.
The Beavers put together a rally in the bottom half of the sixth. After loading the bases, Norris came to the plate and delivered with a two-out single up the middle to score two runs and brought Oregon State within one.
After a scoreless seventh inning, the Beavers once again mounted an attack in the bottom of the eighth. Adalberto Santos led the inning off with a single and was moved over to second by a Wallace sacrifice bunt. An error by Bears third-basemen Brayden Drake, followed by a Blake Gibbs pinch-hit walk loaded the bases for Ortiz. The Oregon State catcher came through with a double that scored two and put the Beavers ahead 8-7 going into the ninth, where Rhoderick allowed just one baserunner while shutting down the Bears for his fourth save of the year.
The series continues Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at all Ticketmaster outlets, including www.ticketmaster.com, and by calling (503) 224-4400. Tickets will also be made available at the PGE Park box office.
Single-game tickets for the Papé Grand Slam are $10 for adults and $5 for youths (ages 3-18), with each seat being general admission. Oregon State students who present their ID on game day can also get seats for $5. Those who have season tickets for the 2009 Oregon State baseball season will have a specific number of sections reserved for them on the Oregon State dugout side of PGE Park.
Oregon State Notes: Logan Boyd made his first start of the 2009 season, playing in right field... Friday's game marked the first time of the season that the Beavers donned their white hats with black brims... In addition to setting a career high in hits, John Tommasini recorded his second multi-hit game of the season... The fourth inning blast was Stefen Romero's second home run of the season... James Nygren appeared in a game for the fifth time this season and held opponents scoreless for the third time... While recording his fourth save of the season, closer Kevin Rhoderick completed his fifth scoreless appearance in six tries...
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