Last night, the Bruins got another solid start, but another no-decision for starter Jake Bird in UCLA’s 5-4 extra inning win over the Arizona State Sun Devils. It wasn’t Bird’s fault he didn’t get the win. It was shaky pitching from the bullpen.
For his part, Bird allowed three runs, two of them earned, on seven hits with two strikeouts in seven innings pitched and he left the game with UCLA up 4-3.
That’s because UCLA got on the board early. In the bottom of the first, both Daniel Amaral and Kevin Kendall drew walks to start the inning. With Chase Strumpf at the plate and one out, Bruin coach John Savage called for a double steal to stay out of the double play, but a throwing error by ASU catcher Lyle Lin scored both runners and UCLA led 2-0.
In the second, Amaral was back at the plate. This time, rather than leading off, there were runners on the corners. Amaral laid a bunt down the third base line, which scored Jake Pries, but ASU third baseman Gage Workman threw the ball away, allowing Will McInerny to score, too, as UCLA took a 4-0 lead.
In the top of the seventh, Bird started the inning by giving up a solo homer and followed that up by giving up a single to Carter Aldrete. Hunter Bishop, who was batting for Workman, singled home Aldrete and eventually scored himself to make it 4-3, UCLA.
With Bird at 111 pitches, Savage went to the bullpen to start the eighth, but Garrett Barker gave up a lead off walk to Gage Canning, the only batter he faced. Canning advanced to third on a fielding error by Ryan Kreidler and a wild pitch while a sacrifice fly brought him in and tied the game.
In the bottom of the tenth, it was still tied 4-4. RJ Teijero walked and moved to third on a double to right center by Jarron Silva, who was pinch-hitting for Jordan Prendiz. With still just one out, John Savage sent Kyle Cuellar to pinch hit for Kreidler and he delivered a single that scored Teijero to win the game, 5-4.
With one win under their belts already, UCLA will be looking for the series win when the series resumes this afternoon at 1 pm PT with Zach Pettway (3-0, 2.51 ERA) facing righty Boyd Vander Kooi (3-1, 1.07 ERA) in a matchup between freshman phenoms. This afternoon’s game will be televised, but only on Pac-12 Network Los Angeles. Of course, streaming is available on Pac-12.com.
This is your UCLA Bruins vs. Arizona State Sun Devils Game 2 open thread.