While games one and two of this series were dictated by quality pitching and defense, game three was the story of the offense. Oregon State’s bats came alive for the first time in this series versus the Cal Golden Bears in today’s rubber match. All but three of the twelve players that checked into OSU’s lineup recorded a hit, so it was a day enjoyed by almost all batters in orange and black.
Oregon State came screaming out at the start of the game, as they compiled five runs in the bottom of the first inning. Just one inning later, they added four more runs off a grand slam from Ryan Ober to make the game 9-0 before the second inning was over. Cal would attempt to mount a comeback over the span of the next several innings, as they got on the board with two runs in the third inning and tacked on three more in the seventh to make the game 9-5 after seven full innings. After the seventh, Adley Rutschman wanted to put the game out of reach for good, so he tacked on a sac fly in the eighth to push the lead back to five runs. After this, neither team scored again the rest of the game to give us a final score of 10-5 in favor of the Beavs.
In a day where offenses ruled, it should be noted that Grant Gambrell came in and pitched well, even if his scoreline won’t entirely reflect it. He went six and a third innings and allowed four runs (however, just 2 earned) off of six hits. What is most impressive is how Gambrell notched 12 strikeouts in his time on the bump. He was averaging nearly two strikeouts an inning, which goes to show how well he commanded his pitches today.
Make that 12 strikeouts for Gambrell today. pic.twitter.com/vRWqQ8E3RI— Oregon State Baseball (@BeaverBaseball) March 24, 2019
As for offense, a few of the biggest contributors were Ryan Ober, Preston Jones and Adley Rutschman. Each of these players recorded at least two RBI’s in their performances, with Ober notching four on his grand slam in the second. This deep fly was Ober’s first career home run, so it will certainly be a great moment for him in this series as well as his baseball career.
This was a big-time bounce back series for Oregon State. Losing the series to UCLA hurt, and was compounded with starting this series off with a loss in game 1. The losing had cast some concern over some of Beaver Nation; so respond with two big wins to clinch the series against a solid, if not underrated, Cal squad was a big statement for Oregon State early in the season. With the Pac-12 shaping up to be quite good in baseball, the Beavers will need more offensive performances like today to keep tacking on the W’s in a competitive conference.
The Beavers will travel to Ron Tonkin Field on Tuesday to play against the Portland Pilots before traveling to Seattle this weekend for a three game series against the Washington Huskies.