SDSU suffers run-rule defeat after seven innings
Photo: Andrew Martinez had two hits in the loss to Fresno State on Saturday. Courtesy goaztecs.com
May 27, 2017 (Alberquerque) - San Diego State fell victim to the tourney run rule as it dropped a 12-1 decision to Fresno State in seven innings at the Mountain West Tournament in Albuquerque, N.M. The result means both team have a loss and it will all come down to a single game for the 2017 conference championship on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. MT at Santa Ana Star Field.
The run rule states that the contest will be ended if either team has a 10-run or larger lead after seven innings. The run rule was instituted starting with the 2015 conference tournament. Although they defeated New Mexico via that method in Nevada that year, the Aztecs had never suffered the fate themselves until today.
The game was scoreless after the opening two innings although there was a feeling that not much would go well for the Aztecs in the contest.
SDSU (40-19) opened each of its first two innings by putting a runner on first, only to see him erased via the double play. In the fifth, a walk and single put two men on with no outs, but a line drive turned into a double play and ended that threat. The Bulldogs added a fourth double play in the next inning after a leadoff walk.
Fresno State (35-24), meanwhile, was putting up a full house of runs from the third through seventh frames. That included a pair of three-run and three two-run innings as it took a 12-0 lead. Those markers came against a trio of Aztec pitchers, who were unable to stem the tide.
Senior Cody Thompson got the start, and after the first two scoreless innings, was touched up for five runs on seven hits over the third and fourth frames. He would be charged with the loss to even his season record at 2-2.
For the Bulldogs, starting right-hander Rickey Ramirez went the distance, allowing a lone run on six hits with three walks and a strikeout. He had surrendered only three hits through the first six frames before the Aztecs finally reached him in the seventh, but it was too little, too late. He would be credited with the win to improve to 3-6 on the year.
SDSU’s consolation run came in the bottom of the seventh on a double by Danny Sheehan and a two-out RBI single by Andrew Martinez.
Martinez (two singles) was the lone Aztec to have more than one hit in the contest while Sheehan’s double was SDSU’s only extra-base hit of the game.
San Diego state will now look to re-group as it prepares for Sunday’s winner-take-all showdown with Fresno State for the Mountain West title.