Andy Lopez doesn’t blame Austin Schnabel for the way things went Sunday afternoon.
The freshman right-hander only recorded one out, and allowed four runs, before he was removed.
On the season, he is 0-4 with a 9.18 ERA.
But no, it wasn’t his fault.
It was the other guy.
Lopez blames Jace Fry, Oregon State’s pitcher, for the Wildcats’ 11-0 loss to the Beavers at Hi Corbett Field.
“Boy, their guy pitched well,” Lopez said. “Obviously we had a rough start with Austin, but I think it came down to (Fry). He was really good. That was fun to watch. Painful, but fun to watch.”
Fry dominated Arizona, not giving up a hit in the first seven innings. He struck out five before Willie Calhoun finally broke the no-hit bid to open the eighth inning. Quickly, Fry was removed.
Finally, the Wildcat crowd at Hi Corbett Field had something to cheer about, however briefly. Arizona (12-18, 2-7 Pac-12) recorded two more hits that inning, but no runs. And, already trailing 11-0, the game was all but over.
“It felt good as a player to get that hit and break up a no-hitter so he doesn’t have the confidence,” said Calhoun, a freshman third baseman. “But he did a good job throughout the whole game. I felt he was hittable we just couldn’t adjust to him.”
In that eighth inning, when Calhoun got the first hit, Zach Gibbons got the second, and Scott Kingery the third to load the bases.
But, Joseph Maggi grounded out to the pitcher. Inning over and, soon after, game over.
Three hours and 10 minutes earlier, things felt a little bit better. The Wildcats broke an eight-game losing streak by beating OSU 11-2 on Saturday night, but that momentum didn’t carry over.
And Lopez said that starts on the mound.
“Whoever is doing their best right there, that team has momentum,” Lopez said. “If their guy is doing well, and our guy is doing well, then momentum is just going back and forth. Their guy came out and went ‘whack, whack, whack’. Our guy went out and gave up four, so the momentum there was pretty much established.”
That eighth inning at the plate was really the only glimmer of hope for the UA on the day.
Cody Moffett was a bright spot — he relieved Schnabel in the first, lasted a season-high 4ª innings, and gave up one earned run with three strikeouts. At one point, he retired eight straight batters.
But, he had to come out in the fifth inning when his elbow started hurting.
Also, pitcher/designated hitter Bobby Dalbec hurt his shoulder on Sunday, too.
“It’s kind of piling on us here,” Lopez said. “I don’t even know our record. I know that today we played poorly, they played extremely well. We didn’t hit at all, we had poor pitching. I have cardiac rehab tomorrow, I’ll do some work tomorrow on the program and get to practice on Tuesday.”
The Wildcats will start a three-game series with Utah in Salt Lake City on Friday at 11 a.m.
“It’s been up and down,” said second baseman Trent Gilbert. “It’s hard to be up and positive after something like this. It’s been frustrating at times, we’re doing our best to stay positive and keep going.”