AUBURNDALE, Fla. – The 24th-ranked (D3Baseball.com poll of March 5, 2017) Baldwin Wallace University baseball team was swept by the University of Mount Union in its Ohio Athletic Conference season-opening doubleheader at Lake Myrtle Park. Despite the losses, BW ended a very positive first 13 games away from the friendly confines of Fisher Field with nine victories.
This is the first time BW (9-4, 0-2 OAC) has ever opened its OAC schedule while on its annual spring break trip to Ft. Myers, Port Charlotte and Winter Haven, Florida. BW played eight games (4-4 record), including a contest versus NCAA Div. I Central Michigan University. BW lost the first game, 4-1, and Mount Union (7-3, 2-0 OAC) won game two with a 5-0 victory.
In game one, the Yellow Jackets scored their only run in fourth inning. The Purple Raiders scored four unanswered runs with one in the bottom of the fourth, one in the fifth and two in the sixth.
BW recorded eight hits and left eight runners on base. At the plate the Yellow Jackets were led by senior right fielder Alex Marcum (Granville) as he went three-for-four. In addition, junior third basemen Spencer Badia (Bellaire) and junior catcher Trent Kaltenbach (Plain City/Johnathan Elder) each went two-for-four.
On the bump, sophomore starting pitcher Evan Lovick (Mentor) pitched seven innings with six strikeouts but was given the loss. Sophomore pitcher Danny Cody (Brecksville/Brecksville-Broadview Heights) came in relief and recorded three strikeouts in one inning of work.
In game two, Mount Union scored one run in the first, one in the second and drove home three runs in the fifth.
Offensively the Yellow Jackets were led by Kaltenbauch and sophomore designated hitter Asa Adams (Saxonburg, Pa./Knoch) as they each went two-for-four and combined for four of the teams six hits.
Senior pitcher Logan Heffernan (Lebanon) was credited with the loss as he pitched the first three innings. Sophomore Brandon Lekan (Strongsville), Cody and freshman Ian Hennessey (Strongsville) each came out of the bullpen in relief.
BW is back in action on Saturday, March 18 when they host Waynesburg (Pa.) University and 21st-ranked LaRoche (Pa.) College for two non-conference games on Fisher Field. The Yellow Jackets square off against Waynesburg at 10 a.m. and play LaRoche at 4 p.m.
Yellow Jacket Chatter
THE STATISTICAL LEADERS: After 13 games, senior two-time All-OAC and All-Mideast Region outfielder Cole Nieto (Brunswick/ Cleveland St. Ignatius) leads the team with a .395 batting average (17 of 43) with a team-high five doubles and eight stolen bases to go with one triple, two home runs and 14 runs batted-in (RBI). Overall, BW is hitting .326 as a team and averaging 8.6 runs per game.
In addition to Nieto, junior Academic All-OAC third baseman Spencer Badia (Bellaire) is second at .391 (18 of 46) with a team-high three home runs, junior catcher Trent Kaltenbach (Plain City/ Jonathan Alder) is at .388 with a team-high 19 base hits, and senior outfielder Alex Marcum (Granville) is hitting .383 (18 of 47) and has a team-high 17 RBI. To access the most up-to-date BW baseball statistics, CLICK HERE.
The starting pitching staff is led by sophomore Danny Cody (Brecksville/ Breacksville-Broadview Heights), who is 2-0 with a 1.31 earned run average (ERA) and 21 strikeouts in 20 and two-third innings and covering a team-high six appearances. In addition, junior two-time All-OAC selection Evan Lovick (Mentor) is 2-1 with a 2.40 earned run average (ERA). Senior Logan Heffernan (Lebanon) is 1-1 with a 2.45 ERA and a team-high 22 whiffs in 18 and one-third innings pitched. Sophomore Brandon Lekan (Strongsville) is 1-0 with a 4.20 ERA.
ANNUAL BASEBALL ALUMNI GATHERING: The annual BW Baseball Alumni gathering this spring will be on Saturday, April 8 when the Yellow Jackets host OAC arch-rival and 18th-ranked Marietta College in a doubleheader at Bob Fisher Field at 1:00 p.m.
ZIMMERMAN STARTS SECOND PRO SEASON: 2016 BW graduate and OAC Player of the Year Mark Zimmerman is beginning his second professional baseball season as a member of the San Diego Padres. He was drafted last spring after completing an outstanding four-year career as a Yellow Jacket. Good luck, Mark!
BW BASEBALL ALMANAC: Since the late 90's, Baldwin Wallace graduate and former Academic All-America baseball student-athlete and second baseman Guy Fisher has maintained the BW Baseball Almanac. It is his labor of love. To access the web site, CLICK HERE.