Tuscaloosa, Ala.--The Auburn Tigers stumbled early in their baseball series opener with the Alabama Crimson Tide and in the end fell 6-2 on Friday night after losing starting pitcher Cole Lipscomb after only two innings.
The redshirt junior went into the contest with a 2-3 record and a 5.19 ERA, but was pulled after the top of the third inning.
“That definitely wasn’t the plan or the script going into it,” said Coach Butch Thompson when asked about Lipscomb’s early exit. “He was a little tight on his fastball. I think the breaking ball and the changeup were fine.
“When we started talking a little bit about the arm too much we just moved on. We’ll check on him. He went into the eighth inning against Ole Miss, and he threw a complete game last week. We just moved on.”
Thompson moved on to reliever Gabe Klobosits, who had a rough outing. The Galveston College transfer did not record an out while allowing three runs on three hits and a walk. By the time Andrew Mitchell replaced him the Tigers found themselves in a three-run hole. However, Mitchell proved quite useful in relief going four and 1/3 innings.
“I thought once we got to Andrew Mitchell we got three plus innings there and at least settled down and drew it back to 3-2 in the fifth,” Thompson said.
Those two runs would come after a double by Jackson Burgreen brought home Niko Buentello and an infield single by J.J. Shaffer scored Burgreen.
The “difference in the game,” according to Thompson was Alabama’s pitching. Starter Geoffrey Bramblett went a solid five and 2/3 innings giving up two runs (one unearned) on three hits while fanning seven Tiger batters.
Matt Foster came on for Bramblett and shut down Auburn only allowing one hit through three and ? innings. Foster saved his second game of the season.
“Foster with his fastball, you know, we kind of take pride in being able to stay on and be competitive against anybody’s fastball,” said Thompson. “He had a good one tonight and he pitched with it a lot.”
The Crimson Tide would add and insurance run in the sixth with a solo homer by catcher Will Haynie and two more in the seventh from an RBI double by first baseman Cody Henry and an RBI single by right fielder Chandler Taylor.
The Tigers, now 20-25 (7-15 SEC) will look to even the series on Saturday against Alabama (26-20, 11-11 SEC) with Justin Camp (3-3, 3.63 ERA) expected to take the mound on his graduation day. First pitch is set for right after 6 p.m. CDT with TV coverage provided by the SEC Network.