April 10, 2011
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue baseball scored five times in the second inning and led for much of the game, but a pair of errors in the eighth inning helped Michigan tie it and the Wolverines went on to win in 10 innings, 6-5, Sunday afternoon at Lambert Field.
Michigan (8-21, 2-4 Big Ten) scored four unearned runs in the eighth and got a solo home run from Garrett Stephens to lead off the top of the 10th, denying the Boilermakers (20-11, 3-3 Big Ten) their first series sweep of U-M since 1993.
Joe Haase followed up his complete-shutout last weekend at Minnesota with another quality start, working seven innings of one-run ball. He tied his career-high with seven strikes for the second consecutive start. The Wolverines scored a single run in the top of the first to end Haase's consecutive scoreless innings streak at 14, but the junior kept Michigan off the scoreboard for the rest of his outing.
The relief work of Brandon Sinnery and Alex Lakatos highlighted the day for the Wolverines. The right-handers teamed up for nine scoreless innings. Lakatos (2-1) earned the win despite not recording a strikeout over 3 2/3 innings. He got out of a jam in the 10th inning, which saw Andrew Dixon get thrown out at the plate for the second out and Tyler Spillner hit a game-ending fielder's choice ground ball to second base with the potential tying run on second.
Purdue head coach Doug Schreiber was just as dismayed with his team's inability to extend its early lead as he was with the two errors committed by the middle infielders in the eighth inning.
Patrick Biondi tied the game in the eighth with a two-out single up the middle, winning a lefty-lefty matchup with Purdue reliever Pat Gannon. Biondi also made a game-saving catch in the bottom of the ninth, robbing Barrett Serrato of what would most likely have been a walk-off hit. The center fielder made an impressive running catch over his head. Michigan doubled off Kevin Plawecki at first base on the fly ball to end the inning.
The Wolverines turned four double plays, including a 1-2-3 twin killing on a comebacker off the bat of Eric Charles with the bases loaded in the eighth inning. Michigan turned double plays to end the seventh, eighth and ninth innings.
The Boilermakers lost Ryan Bridges to a serious ankle injury during their five-run second inning. Bridges landed awkwardly on his right leg after colliding with Stephens at first base on a sacrifice bunt. Stephens had jumped in the air to try to catch a wild throw and came down on top of Bridges.
Cameron Perkins extended his hitting streak to 13 consecutive games with a 2-for-4 day.
Kevin Krantz and Biondi delivered the big hits in Michigan's four-run eighth inning. Purdue had a chance to end the frame early after Lance Breedlove induced a double play ground ball to second off the bat of Lakatos. But the ball went through the legs of Charles. Breedlove struck out Stephens, but Krantz followed with a double down the left field line, scoring a pair. Breedlove was able to get another ground ball that should have of ended the inning, this time shortstop David Miller throwing the ball away to give Biondi the opportunity to tie the game. The Boilermakers were unable to retire the Michigan's leadoff man until he tried to bunt for a hit in the 10th inning.
The first two Purdue hitters reached base safely to start the bottom of the 10th. Stephen Talbott advanced Dixon and pinch runner Payton Bieker with a sacrifice bunt. Miller battled Lakatos during a lengthy at-bat that saw the shortstop foul off at least six pitches, eventually hitting a ground ball to first base. Michigan had the infield playing in and Stephens cut down Dixon at the plate thanks to catcher Cole Martin handling a low throw. Spillner hit a ground ball to second moments later that new second baseman John DiLaura took to the bag for a game-ending force out.
Purdue also had an excellent chance to tie the game in eighth inning after back-to-back walks to Talbott and Miller and a base hit by Spillner. Talbott had to hold up initially on the line drive through the right side of the infield off the bat of Spillner and wasn't able to score from second base. Lakatos jumped ahead in the count on Charles and got the Purdue second baseman to hit a comebacker on an 0-and-2 pitch for an inning-ending 1-2-3 twin killing.
The Boilermakers sent 10 men to the plate in their five-run second inning. Plawecki was hit by a pitch and Barrett Serrato singled to begin the rally. Plawecki scored when Michigan starter Tyler Mills threw the ball away on Bridges' sac bunt. After the injury delay, Angelo Cianfrocco walked to load the bases and Talbott singled to right field, chasing Mills. Sinnery was greeted by run-scoring singles by Miller and Spillner. But the heart of the Purdue order was unable to extend the rally any further due in part to an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded.
Haase got out of jams with two men on base in the third, fifth and seventh innings. He closed his outing by striking out the No. 2 and 3 hitters in the Michigan lineup with runners on the corners in the seventh. Haase tallied at least one strikeout in five of his seven frames, striking out the side in the seventh.
Purdue returns to action Tuesday when it opens a 10-game road stretch with a midweek game at Ball State. First pitch in Muncie, Ind., is slated for 3 p.m.