Texas senior 3B Michael Torres had 2 home runs against TCU. (Statesman.com)

Texas senior 3B Michael Torres had 2 home runs against TCU. (Statesman.com)

Texas set an NCAA record Saturday with 7 sacrifice bunts but luckily Texas coach [tag]Augie Garrido[/tag] let third baseman [tag]Michael Torres[/tag] swing away. The senior from California had a career day leading the Longhorns going 4-for-5 with 2 home runs and 4 RBIs (and zero sacrifice bunts) as Texas beat [tag]TCU[/tag] 10-4 in the opening game of the Super Regionals. Starting pitcher [tag]Chance Ruffin[/tag] gave up 3 homers but didn’t make many other mistakes during his complete game win.

The Longhorns play TCU today at 2pm on ESPN and if they win they’ll be headed back to the College World Series in Omaha.

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Posted May 31st, 2009 by Brian
Filed under: Baseball, World Series

The Texas baseball team provided us with two straight nights of heartstopping baseball and again on Sunday night they pulled out the victory. This time it only took 9 innings, but the Longhorns had to come back from 4 runs down in the bottom of the 9th inning to beat [tag]Army[/tag] and close out the Austin Regional.

Down 10-6 to start the half inning Texas rallied to tie it at 10 off a nearly gamewinning walk-off grand slam [tag]Brandon Loy[/tag]. A few batters later with the game still tied, [tag]Preston Clark[/tag] only need to put the ball in play to win but instead put the ball over the left field wall. Clark’s walk-off slam gave the Longhorns the 14-10 and ended the regional tournament with the hosts on top.

There are no dates or times available yet, but next up Texas will host the TCU Horned Frogs in Austin for the best-of-three Super Regional.

Check out our live game tweets from @40acressports below:

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Posted May 3rd, 2009 by Mike
Filed under: Baseball, Feature

Travis Tucker hit a grand slam Saturday against Baylor.

Travis Tucker hit a grand slam Saturday against Baylor. (Image: Statesman.com)

The Texas baseball team took a huge step towards a Big 12 title over the weekend by sweeping [tag]Baylor[/tag] in a three game home split series. That is now two sweeps of top conference foes in the last three series, the first came two weekends ago against [tag]Oklahoma[/tag]. The Longhorns needed a big weekend following a 0-2-1 series at home against [tag]Kansas State[/tag].

Texas has relied on pitching for much of the season but in the first two games the Longhorn offense exploded for double digit run totals thanks in large part to horrible defense by Baylor.

Augie Garrido’s group hosted game one on Friday in Austin in a matchup between [tag]Chance Ruffin[/tag] and Kendal Volz that aired on ESPNU. Volz, the closer for last year’s USA national team and a likely first round pick, struggled early with his control and Longhorn hitters took advantage. [tag]Kevin Lusson[/tag], playing at DH and on fire, came through with an RBI in the first inning. UT added another run on a Volz wild pitch to take a 2-0 lead after one.

The Longhorns added two more in the second, and following a Baylor run in the top of the third, added a fifth run in the third.

Up 5-1 with Ruffin cruising Texas looked to put the game away early but Baylor added two in the top of the fifth and one more in the top of the sixth to cut the lead to 5-4.

The Bears had the momentum, and Volz had settled down by getting ahead of Texas hitters, but the Baylor defense couldn’t stay out of their own way. They committed seven total errors on the night, one of which was on Volz himself.

Texas scratched across four runs in the seventh and three runs in the eight to stretch the lead to 12-4 with closer [tag]Austin Wood[/tag] on the mound. Wood pitched three total innings, a decision that was puzzling with an eight run lead and two more games left in the weekend, allowing no runs.

On Saturday the series moved to Waco. And it wasn’t a good day to be a pitcher. The two teams, both known for solid pitching, allowed a total 30 runs on 25 hits in the nine inning slug fest. It was the Longhorns once again that jumped on the Bears early with 10 runs in the first three innings.

The offense was led by the home runs of [tag]Travis Tucker[/tag], [tag]Brandon Belt[/tag], and [tag]Cameron Rupp[/tag]. [tag]Connor Rowe[/tag] had his second strong game in a row collecting four hits in six at bats on Saturday alone.

[tag]Cole Green[/tag] got the start for Texas and he gave the Horns a very solid seven innings of work. The sophomore gave up five runs, only two were earned, with 10 strikeouts. Texas stretched the lead all the way to 19-5 going into the ninth inning where Baylor made a late push to bring the score closer but it was too little too late.

Texas needed the sweep on Sunday in Baylor to put an exclamation point on the series and that is exactly what they did. Texas teams in the past few years have lacked that killer instinct, hopefully a performance like this weekend’s propels them into the postseason.

[tag]Taylor Jungmann[/tag] got a rare weekend start in place of [tag]Brandon Workman[/tag] as he battles a few injuries and bad outings. And the freshman made a case to make the move permanent with a dominating performance. The former Georgetown star struck out 10 batters in six innings allowing only one run on three hits. Jungmann has the most upside of any pitcher on Texas’ staff and it was a great sign to see him step up in a big moment.

Baylor got a great pitching performance of their own from Willie Kempf, but the Longhorn bats managed to a few more runs than the Bears could match.

Texas’ offense was led by the three hits of leadoff hitter [tag]Michael Torres[/tag] and the huge two run RBI homerun by Rupp, his second of the series.

Wood came in to close out his second game in three days to seal up the series.

The sweep puts Texas to the top of the standings along with A&M and Kansas State. The Longhorns will face A&M at home May 8th-10th in what could become a series to decide the regular season championship and the number one seed in the conference tournament. With a series win against the Aggies the Longhorns would essentially become a lock to be one of the top 8 seeds in the national tournament. That would mean Texas wouldn’t have to play outside of Austin until the College World Series if they were able to advance that far.

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The Texas Longhorn baseball team got a much needed series win against [tag]Texas Tech[/tag] over the weekend. Tech managed to sandwich a 4-2 win on Saturday in between Longhorn wins on Friday and Sunday. The series win couldn’t have come at a better time. The Longhorns sit at 4-5 in the Big 12 with a brutal schedule, starting with [tag]Oklahoma State[/tag] next weekend. Texas has yet to win a conference game on the road and they’re sure to face Oklahoma State’s Andrew Oliver in the series opener.

[tag]Chance Ruffin[/tag] got the win on Friday after giving up 4 in 6.2 innings of work. Ruffin moved to 4-2 on the season on a night he didn’t have his best stuff, but was able to command the strike zone. The Longhorn ace threw 98 pitches on the night and 71 counted as strikes. Closer [tag] ustin Wood[/tag] came in with a one run lead in the top of the seventh to shut the door.

Texas only scored in two innings, but they made both of them count. The Longhorns scored five in the bottom of the third after Tech took the lead in the top half of the inning by scoring two. Texas also managed four runs in the bottom of the seventh to put the game away.

Both the Longhorns and Red Raiders recorded 11 hits, but it was the five Tech errors that were the difference.

The Longhorn bats went quiet in the second game. Texas has struggled at the plate, especially with runners in scoring position, all season and it continues to be what is holding this team back. Texas got off to a good start, scoring two runs in the first, but could manage nothing after that.

[tag]Brandon Workman[/tag] had a tough outing and fell to 3-2. He gave up four runs in just four innings of work. [tag]Keith Shinaberry[/tag] and [tag]Taylor Jungmann[/tag] combined to shut out Red Raiders for the rest of the game. Texas never got a rally going however and Tech took the victory.

The Sunday game was about as much of a must win as a top 15 ranked team can have this early in conference play. After propelling the first in the polls after a series win over [tag]Stanford[/tag], which in hindsight isn’t that impressive because the Cardinal are falling apart, Texas has struggled to say the least. And with the schedule getting much tougher coming up Texas couldn’t lose another series to a bottom tier conference foe.

In the first real pressure situation of the year the Longhorns came through. Texas’ bats woke up by scoring in the first five innings. [tag]Cole Green[/tag] only went 4.2 innings so he didn’t get the win, but he was superb only giving up one run. [tag]Austin Wood[/tag] finished the second game of the series.

The top of the lineup played as well as they had all season, but 1-9 this team is still struggling. The move to get [tag]Michael Torres[/tag] to third base and Brandon Loy to shortstop appears to be sticking. It really comes down to Loy’s bat because there is no question the defense will benefit from having him there. If Loy can get on base [tag]Augie Garrido[/tag] can keep him there, but if he can’t Texas may not be able to afford having any more holes in the lineup.

This next weekend is very important for Texas. The last time this team was on the road they got swept by Kansas. The Jayhawks aren’t as bad as some thought, but the Cowboys are better. Texas already faced one of the aces in the conference when they took on Kyle Gibson and Missouri. The Longhorns were shut down that game and Oliver has that kind of talent. If Texas can win this series it will make up for the Kansas sweep because no team is running away with the conference lead, but if OSU takes two or all three of the games the Longhorns will have a huge hill to climb to get to the top of the conference.

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