KU's spiral of defeat continued with a loss in Tulsa tonight to Oral Roberts. Not just a loss, a real old-fashioned butt whopping, 9-1. The KU loosing streak now stands at four.
One bad stat among many that stands out from tonight's loss is that the Jayhawks struck out 14 times, and had zero walks! Maybe the ball was hard to pick up in the twilight, maybe Chance Chapman was on his game, but a 14-0 K/BB ratio has to also indicate of lack of plate discipline, something rarely seen on Rich Price teams.
Freshman Wally Marciel got the start for this first true weekday game and was pounded. He departed after 1.1 innings (12 batters) trailing 6-0 (Gamescore 19). The man he is competing with for weekday starting honors, Andres Esquibel, came on and did a decent job of settling down the raging Golden Eagles. Esquibel gave up two more runs over 3.2 innings (+7 relief points), but the KU offense never woke up to take advantage of the slower pace.
KU collected only 9 base-runners for the game, 7 singles, one double and one hit batter. John Allman had two hits and Robby Price drove in the only run for his fourth RBI. Kyle Murphy had the only extra base hit, and scored the sole Jayhawk run. KU was not much of a threat at the dish tonight.
Hiarali Garcia and Ryotaro Hayakawa pitched scoreless relief innings, Hayakawa striking out two of the four batters he faced. Thomas Marcin game up a run in his inning of bullpen work.
KU's record now stands at 7-5. They will play a three game set at Hoglund vs. the Western Illinois Lethernecks (6-5) on Saturday (Doubleheader starting at 2PM) and Sunday (3PM). Western Illinois appears to be improved this year - at least they are mashing the ball early. Their team batting line is .308/.411/.434. It would be great for KU to get back on track this weekend but it will be no easy task sweeping this team. I'll write-up a series preview later this week.