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Sun Devils Take Series From #23 Beavers Behind Home Run Barrage

May 15, 2021

PHOENIX – Pitching, offense, and defense were nearly flawless as the Sun Devils cruised to an 11-5 victory over #23 Oregon State to take the series on Saturday night at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. 
Capitalizing on the momentum created from last night's walk-off victory, the Sun Devils came out ready to play, putting up a crooked number in each of the first four innings. Arizona State (30-15, 14-9) earned their fifth-straight victory and clinched the series against No. 23 Oregon State (31-17, 13-10). 
The Sun Devils scored 11 runs on 12 hits against a team that came into the series fourth in the nation in ERA (2.91) and third in the country in his allowed per nine innings (6.6). Contributions came from throughout the lineup, as seven different players recorded a hit and five drove in a run. Sun Devil batters left the park a total of five times, the most home runs in a game this season.
Left-hander Justin Fall got the start and picked up right where he left off, impressing with another deep outing. He finished the night with 7.1 innings pitched, allowing only two runs and producing four double plays. By the end of the night, Fall had induced 11 ground balls on the way to his seventh victory of the year. 

No hitter on the planet is hotter than Ethan Long right now, as he added two more home runs tonight. First, he smoked a ball to right center field in the first inning. On the very next pitch he saw in the third, he crushed a ball 428 feet to left field. Later in the game, he added a double that nearly went over the fence, but settled for a three-hit, three-run, and four RBI night.
The Sun Devil offense set the tone from the start, jumping on Oregon State star left-hander Cooper Hjerpe. For the second straight game, ASU scored two runs in each of the first two innings, jumping out to a 4-0 lead early and putting the visitors on their heels.
Arizona State wasn't done adding to the lead, as a three-run third inning put them up 7-0, electrifying the capacity sell-out crowd at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. After Oregon State finally got on the board in the fourth, the Maroon & Gold immediately responded with a two-run inning, putting the game out of reach. 
Justin Fall took over from there, locating and executing his pitches consistently. He kept the Beavers off balance and did not allow them to lift the ball in a night where the wind was blowing out. Fall used his defense wisely, as they recorded four double plays and several other solid fundamental outs. The Sun Devils will go for the series sweep tomorrow and look to become just the second team to sweep the Beavers all season.  
Freshman Ethan Long is enjoying a stretch at the plate unlike any other in the history of the storied Arizona State Baseball program. He hit two more home runs tonight, adding to his legend that is growing to epic status among Sun Devil fans. Long put on a show for his hometown crowd, squaring-up three balls tonight and affecting the way the opposing team used their bullpen.
Left-hander Justin Fall was excellent once again for the Sun Devils, moving to 7-1 on the season with only a 3.41 ERA. Fall pitched into the eighth for the second straight game, giving the bullpen a well-earned rest. He wasn't overpowering, but got the job done by missing barrels and staying composed when faced with baserunners. 
Drew Swift, Kade Higgins, and Nate Baez each added two hits of their own in a balanced offensive effort. Arizona State finished with 12 hits and 11 runs against what had been a dominant Beavers' pitching staff. 

  • Ethan Long now has 14 home runs over his last 13 games and 15 in the last 15 games. With his 15th and 16th home runs of the season, he extended his first place hold in the Pac-12 in home runs to three. 
  • Long has 52 RBI on the season, 17 more than any other player on the team. On April 11, just over one month ago, he was 7th on the team with just 12 RBIs. He is just five back of the Pac-12 lead in the category.
  • Long is now first in Pac-12 league-only games with a .408 average, first in homers (9), first in slugging (.882), second in RBI (27) and fifth in OBP (.484). His .882 in Pac-12 games is 150 points higher than any other player in the league. He is the only player in the league in the top-five in all five categories.
  • How hot is Ethan Long? In a 5-pitch span between his last at bat on Friday night and the first two at bats of tonight's game, he hit three home runs. 
    • It is his fourth multi home run game of the year, doing it against three Pac-12 opponents. 
  • With five Saturday, ASU now has 35 home runs in the last 22 games (1.6 per game). ASU had just 16 home runs in the first 23 games of the year (0.70 per game).
  • Prior to the series, the Beavers' pitching staff had allowed only 17 home runs. Through two games in the series, Arizona State has hit seven home runs. 
  • Since the Stanford series opener on April 16 (18 games), the Sun Devils are batting .322 as a team with 30 home runs and slugging at a .549 clip. In that time, Ethan Long is batting .456 with 40 RBI, 15 home runs, a 1.235 slugging percentage and a .506 OBP. 
  • With four today, ASU has 52 double plays this season and 46 in the last 31 games. It had just six in the first 14 games of the season. ASU entered the weekend second nationally in double plays this year. 
  • ASU added two doubles today and has 54 in the last 19 games (2.8 per game). It averaged just 1.8 doubles per game in the first 26 games of the year. ASU entered the game 19th in the nation in doubles.
  • ASU has now posted double-digit hits in 16 of its last 21 games. The Devils had just 10 double-digit hitting games in the first 24 games of the year. 
  • ASU is now 11-3 in weekend series this year. It's three series losses came in three series splits to three teams in the Pac-12 currently ranked in the Top 15 nationally by at least one publication (Arizona, Oregon, Stanford). 
  • The ASU pitching staff has stranded 381 baserunners in 45 games (8.5 per game).
  • It was just the fourth time this season Oregon State had allowed nine or more runs in a game (two coming in this series. OSU had entered the series with a team 2.91 ERA and a 2.71 ERA in true road games. It was just the seventh time it had allowed double-digit hits in a game (twice this series) after entering the weekend fifth nationally with just 6.7 hits allowed per game and only 5.82 hits per game.
  • Beavers starter Cooper Hjerpe had been extremely successful in keeping the ball in the park, coming into the game having only allowed one home run in his career over 71.0 IP this season and last (59.0 this year). The Sun Devils changed that, with Ethan Long, Joe Lampe, and Hunter Haas each rounding the bases, tripling his career total of long balls allowed. 
    • The most runs the freshman left-hander had allowed all season was six, until tonight. He allowed seven runs in only three innings of work, spiking a 3.04 ERA that he boasted before tonight.
  • Arizona State has scored at least nine runs in each of the past two games, the first time Oregon State had allowed nine or more runs in back-to-back games since Feb. 24-25 of the 2012 season (not a series). It is the first time it has happened twice in a three-game series since all three games at Cal in 2010. 
  • ASU has 20 runs in just two games of the series already. The most Oregon State had given up in a three-game series this year was 23 against UC Irvine. 
  • Prior to the series, the Beavers' pitching staff had allowed only 17 home runs. Through two games in the series, Arizona State has hit seven home runs. 
  • It was the first time ASU has defeated the Beavers in a series since taking 2-of-3 in Phoenix in 2015.
  • The five home runs by the Maroon & Gold offense set a new season single-game high. 
  • Nate Baez has homered in three of his last four games after having none all season. 
  • Justin Fall now has five quality starts on the year and has done so in back-to-back games. He picked up his 7th win of the season, now tied for second in the Pac-12 while his five wins in Pac-12 games are tied for first in the league. His 3.41 ERA on the season is tied for seventh in the league. 

The Sun Devils finish their series at home with Oregon State tomorrow, with a 12:30 p.m. AZT matchup.  The game will be streamed live through the ASU Pac-12 Live Stream

1st Inning
Coming off a complete game gem on the road, left-hander Justin Fall looked to continue the momentum in another Saturday start. He immediately was forced to work out of the stretch, giving up a leadoff single. On the very next pitch he got a soft fly ball to right field, getting an important first out. After another runner reached via walk, Fall was able to work out of the jam. First he got another weak fly ball to right field, followed by a ground out to the first baseman to leave runners on the corners.  
In a near mirror image of last night, the Beavers starter retired the first two batters of the inning, but then found himself in trouble. This time it was left-hander Cooper Hjerpe who was the victim of a Sun Devil two-out rally, as Sean McLain got on base with a single. It set the scene for last night's hero, Ethan Long, who continued his incredible run. Long drilled a ball to right center field that had just enough height for a two-run home run, spotting Arizona State a 2-0 in the first for the second straight night. 
2nd Inning
Looking to cut into the deficit, Oregon State was able to get a lead off single against Justin Fall. After recording an out via fielder's choice, a walk put a pair of runners on with one out. Fall kept his composure, doing what he does best, inducing a ground ball that led to an inning-ending double play, completing an important shutdown inning. 
Something about the Beavers and hot offensive starts for the Sun Devils, as they got to Beavers' starter Cooper Hjerpe early. A one-out single by Nate Baez got a rally started, but the second out of the inning made the threat appear to be resolved. However, the ninth hitter Joe Lampe had different ideas, launching a two-run blast to right field to put Arizona State up 4-0. It is the second straight night ASU has started off with two runs in the first two innings. 
3rd Inning
Justin Fall gave his best effort to provide the Sun Devils another shutdown inning and keep the momentum in the home dugout. He did that with a quick out on a ground out and immediately erasing the lone baserunner of the inning by getting his second double play ball of the game. 
Despite facing one of the elite arms in the conference, Arizona State continued to pour it on, executing on a fantastic game plan prepared by the Sun Devil coaching staff. Sean McLain got things started again by taking one for the team on a hit by pitch. Ethan Long added to his legend, crushing a first-pitch fastball over the left field fence, his second home run of the game to put his team up 6-0. ASU wasn't done scoring in the inning, as Hunter Haas followed Long with a home run of his own two batters later to extend the lead to 7-0.
4th Inning
Working with a seven run lead, Justin Fall ran into a bit of trouble in the fourth. A single and a balk moved a runner into scoring position, who later scored on a seeing-eye single to put the Beavers on the board. Fall bounced back by getting a patented double play, this time of the line-drive variety, to keep ASU ahead 7-1.
Arizona State's relentless offensive approach kept rolling, even after Oregon State brought in right-handed reliever Brock Townsend. It started with a Kade Higgins leadoff triple, with runners on the corners after Joe Lampe was hit by a pitch. Drew Swift followed with a base hit to right field to score a run and put ASU up eight. Swift then stole second base, while Joe Lampe came home on a passed ball to give the Maroon and Gold a 9-1 lead through four. 
 5th Inning
Watching his lead grow every inning, Justin Fall did not allow the large margin to take away his focus. Despite allowing two base runners with only one out, Fall got out of another tough jam going to his ground ball pitch. He induced his fourth double play of the game, thanks to some nice footwork from Hunter Haas at third base.
The Beavers third reliever of the game, Bryant Salgado, finally cracked the code on the Sun Devil offense. For the first time all game, ASU was held off the board after putting up a crooked number in each of the first four innings.
6th Inning
A home run by the first batter of the inning off Justin Fall cut the lead to 9-2, however the left-hander was not fazed. He went on to retire the side and prevent any further damage, getting the Sun Devil bats up to the plate. Drew Swift got on to start the inning via a walk, but was erased on a double play to end the bottom of the frame.
7th Inning
For the second consecutive start, Justin Fall provided the bullpen some rest. Fall took the bump in the seventh and showed no signs of slowing down. He worked around a lead off infield single, retiring the next three hitters to complete the seventh. 
The Maroon and Gold made sure to tack on in the seventh, with the rally started by the usual suspect. Ethan Long almost hit his third home run of the game, but settled for a lead off double. He would walk home on a two-out, two-run bomb by Nate Baez to left center field, giving the Sun Devils an 11-2 lead.
8th Inning
Justin Fall was asked to get one more out and he did exactly that, ending his night with an easy groundout from Beavers three-hole hitter Andy Armstrong. Brady Corrigan was the first to get the call in relief, making an appearance for the second consecutive night. He was able to record the final two outs of the inning with ease. The Sun Devils went down in order in the eighth, holding a comfortable 11-2 lead.
9th Inning
Right-hander Dom Cacchione was the third Sun Devil pitcher, tasked with recording the final three outs. He managed to get those outs, giving up three runs in the process, sealing a 11-5 victory and clinching the series.