Baseball’s Offense Clicking Early

Matthews (above) hit two home runs against Albany.

Steve McLaughlin

Matthews (above) hit two home runs against Albany.

Ryan Jones, Editor-in-Chief

Central Connecticut baseball has steamrolled through its first two games of the season, scoring a total of 23 runs against its first two opponents.

The Blue Devils have hit four home runs over this stretch, including an inside the park home run in the team’s game against UMass Tuesday.

Baseball was one of the many spring sports that were shut down last season. The Blue Devils had not gotten into conference play yet and played their last game one year ago today (March 1o). The game that took place a year ago was a sneak peek into how things look now: no fans were allowed to attend.

The Blue Devils are returning four seniors to its roster, all of whom should be major factors in the team’s success this season. Dave Matthews, Andrew Braun, Brandon Fox and Buddy Dewaine are the returning veterans.

TT Bowens will not be returning to the diamond for CCSU this year after getting picked by the Orioles in last season’s Major League Baseball Draft.

With most of its core returning, the Blue Devils did not seem to miss a beat in their season opener against Albany on March 7.

The only rust to shake off came early. Fox got the start against Albany and had a tough going in his first game back. The senior walked six batters and gave up five runs in his three innings of work.

After giving up five runs over the first two innings, the Blue Devils stifled Albany’s offense the rest of the way, allowing only one run and delivering two no-hit innings.

Matthews had himself a day on offense. He got started early, hitting one out of the park that brought home two base runners. His day was not done yet, however.

While Albany’s offense stalled, CCSU’s rolled on.

The Blue Devils scored nine runs over the sixth and seventh innings. Redshirt freshman Noah Martinez started the sixth off with a two run homer and Matthews followed it up with one of his own. Matthews followed this up with an RBI in the seventh, bringing his total to six on the day.

Braun earned the win on the mound, striking out four without allowing any runs to score over his three innings of work.

CCSU’s next game against UMass was more of a nail-biter.

The game sat tied at two in the bottom of the fourth. Central Connecticut retaliated in its usual fashion: a quick five run inning, all of the runs coming from singles and groundout RBIs.

In the sixth inning, Dan Covino hit an inside-the-park home run that put CCSU up 8-4.

Things got a little scary for the Blue Devils as they tried to seal the win. UMass brought the game to within two. Freshman reliever Jake Neuman was able to finish the game off and took home his first career win on the mound for CCSU.

The Blue Devils will play three games against Stony Brook this weekend before rematching Albany and then starting their conference season.