Big win for KU last night. The Jayhawks beat down the Cornhuskers 10-5 at Hoglund. The basepads were covered in blue all night. KU had twenty base runners in only eight innings of offensive work. In truth the Cornhuskers were lucky to keep the score as low as it was.
Brock Simpson was one of three different Jayhawks to collect three hits last night. He was joined by John Allman and Robby Price. KU totaled 13 hits, five walks and two reached by error against the Big-12's second best pitching staff last night. (Photo courtesy of KUathletics.com)
So hot were the KU bats that Nebraska ace Tony Watson could not make it past the second inning. He was pulled after only recording five outs, six hits and four runs. The Cornhuskers hung with Kansas early, and chased Andy Marks in the fifth inning when they tied the score at 5-5, but from that point on it was all Jayhawks. Andres Esquibel pitched his best game of the year in relief, shutting down Nebraska's offense like a liquor store on Easter Sunday. In 3.1 innings Esquibel only gave up one hit. He recorded 10 outs while throwing 39 pitches, 28 for strikes. Big props to the big man out of the pen.
This dominating performance happened in front of one of the biggest crowds of the season at Hoglund. The attendance was over 1,300 adding noise and energy to the night. I'd estimate that about a third of the crowd was made up of Nebraska fans. The Cornhuskers really travel well.
The only disappointing part of the evening was what happened outside of Lawrence. Baylor rallied and overcame a huge K-State lead to win 9-8 and Oklahoma survived a Texas Tech scare at 6-5. This means that KU stayed in 9th place in the conference despite their win. They still need to pick up at least one game on OU or two on Baylor this weekend to make the Big-12 tournament. There is a third long-shot scenario that would put the Jayhawks in Oklahoma City next week. If Baylor sweeps Kansas State this weekend, and KU sweeps Nebraska, the Jayhawks would then climb over K-State into eighth place and the Wildcats would be knocked out of the tournament. If this highly unlikely scenario plays out I am sure the sounds of rage and despair coming out of Manhattan will be so loud that the folks in Lawrence will hear them on Sunday.
Game two is tonight at 6PM, Sunday's wrap up is at 5PM. You couldn't find a better weekend to spend some time at the Hog. I will not be at the game tonight so if you go I hope you log on and leave your recap.
- - - Travis Metcalf called up to majors - - -
As one last positive note to yesterday's happenings, KU's all time home run king Travis Metcalf realized his dream of playing in the majors last night. He was called up to the Texas Rangers to replace the injured Hank Blalock. Metcalf holds the KU records for career home runs (29) and single season home runs (18).