Baseball trumps Taylor

The Butler baseball team scored early and often against Taylor on Tuesday in the team’s final contest before a seven-game trip to Florida.

The Bulldogs (4-4) scored six runs in the first three innings and put the game away with seven more in the eighth inning, as they toppled the Trojans (2-4), 16-5.

Butler received RBIs from 11 different players and racked up 19 hits against its opponent.

Junior rightfielder Michael Hoscheit went 3-for-6 with two RBIs and three runs scored and freshman center fielder Marcos Calderon went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs and a stolen base.

The eighth inning saw all nine Butler hitters come to the plate at least once. With one out and two runners on base, sophomore center fielder Andrew Eckhardt drove home the Bulldogs’ first run of the frame with a double.

Then, with two outs and after Hoscheit scored on a wild pitch, junior shortstop Griffin Richeson drove home Eckhardt to put Butler up, 12-5. Two batters later, sophomore second baseman Bob Akin singled home another run.

Freshman infielder Patrick Guinane put the Bulldogs up 14-5 by driving a single up the middle on the first pitch of his first collegiate at-bat.

Freshman first baseman Zach Sizemore capped the scoring with a two-run single, giving Butler the 16-5 advantage by which they eventually won.

Butler’s 16 runs and 19 hits were a season high for the squad. The Bulldogs’ previous top offensive output was 10 runs and 16 hits against South Carolina-Upstate.

Another noteworthy offensive accomplishment was turned in by senior catcher Michael Letzter, who picked up his second home run in as many games in the first inning.

Senior pitcher Dom Silvestri was the top hurler for the Bulldogs, going four innings in relief and giving up one run on two hits while striking out six.

On Sunday, the Bulldogs faced off against Oakland in what was supposed to be the second of two weekend doubleheaders. Butler recovered from a big loss in the first game to defeat the Golden Grizzlies (1-4) by a 3-0 margin in game two.

It was the first shutout posted by the Bulldogs this season.

Senior pitcher Jared Wagoner and sophomore pitcher Jared Earle gave up a combined five hits over the nine scoreless innings, with Earle pitching two hitless frames.

“It was good to hang a couple zeros on the board,” Wagoner said. “The defense played well and we got a couple big hits.”

Butler scored all of its runs off one swing in the sixth inning. Richeson led off the inning with a single, which was followed by another single from senior third baseman Grant Fillipitch.

Then, Letzter cracked a three-run home run to give the Bulldogs all of the runs they would need.

“Practice has been way more intense this year,” Letzter said of his strong start. “The workouts have intensified and getting after it as a whole has helped.”

Head coach Steve Farley has been pleased with the performances of many of his hitters so far this season.

“The hitters are doing well, especially the top three in every batting order,” Farley said. “Fillipitch is on fire, hitting line drives everywhere, and Waggoner and Letzter have been doing well too.”

The victory also marked Butler’s first errorless game of the season.

In game one of the doubleheader, what was a close contest turned ugly late, as Butler dropped a 15-3 decision, giving the Golden Grizzlies their first win of the season.

The first of the two scheduled doubleheaders against Oakland was cancelled due to inclement weather.

The Bulldogs will start a series of seven games during a seven-day trip to Winter Haven, Fla., on Sunday when they face Minnesota-Duluth and Mount Marty.

“We need to keep doing what we’re doing,” Farley said. “If we score five or six runs per game, we think we can win.

“When we don’t beat ourselves, we have a good chance.”

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