ACC Baseball Tournament Notebook

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – It was easy to see rather quickly that Clemson, which led the ACC in home runs hit, was going to have a difficult time hitting the ball over the wall Wednesday at The Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

Forget the fact that there was a constant stiff breeze of 14 mph blowing in and to the left, the dimensions of the park will make it difficult for anyone to crank one out of the park.

While the two corners are rather forgiving with it just 321 feet down the leftfield line and only 317 feet down the right field line, the power allies and centerfield are monstrous.

In left-center field, the distance climbs quickly to 382 feet, with right-center coming in at 375 feet. However, the wall in centerfield is a ridiculous 420 feet from home plate. The dimensions make it the largest park in Southern League, which is a Class AA professional baseball league.

The closest any Tiger came to hitting it out against Virginia Wednesday came from Taylor Harbin, who crushed a pitch well over the fence in left field. But the wind, coupled with a little hook on the ball, pushed it well foul.

Miami-N.C. State Recap
Behind strong pitching by starter Andrew Brackman (4-0) and reliever Joey Devine (S-12), the Wolfpack shut down the powerful offense of Miami to get the 2-1 victory and force the Hurricanes to face Clemson at 10 a.m. Thursday.

N.C. State (40-15) scored both of its runs in the top of the first inning on a two-run double by Brian Aragon off star pitcher Cesar Carrillo (12-2), who lost his second straight games after winning 24 in a row.

The Hurricanes (38-16-1) managed a run in the fifth, but never really threatened to do so again as they managed just six hits for the entire game.

One note of interest, Miami manager Jim Morris was thrown out at the conclusion of the eighth inning in hopes of firing up his team and preventing a five-game losing streak.

"I don't remember the last time I lost five in a row, to be honest with you," Morris said. "It's been a long time. Sure, I'm concerned. We've got good players, we've got a good team, but we can't seem to put it together right now as a group to do what we need to, to win. It takes a total team effort to get this done and we haven't done that the last few games."

Great At-Bats
With the score tied at 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning against Virginia, the Tigers were trying to scratch out a run anyway possible.

With a runner on first, Clemson's Stan Widmann put together an at-bat that was one for the ages. He fouled off seven pitches and made Cavaliers pitcher Jeff Kamrath throw 12 pitches before finally earning a walk, which put runners at first and second with one out.

Catcher Adrian Casanova came up next and smoked a pitch near the line at third. However, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman made a fabulous backhanded grab, stepped on third for the second out and tossed it over to first for the third out to end Clemson's rally.

Another similar at-bat took place by Clemson's Kris Harvey in the eighth. He, too, fouled off seven pitches before stroking a single to left field. But like Widmann's result in the fourth, no runs scored.

Bottom Is the Tops
The bottom half of Virginia's lineup was responsible for its win over the Tigers.

The sixth-, seventh-, eighth- and ninth-place hitters for the Cavaliers went to the plate 19 times and reached base via an error, walk, base hit or hit-by-pitch 12 times.

Conversely, those same hitters for Clemson went to the plate 16 times and reached base six times. Of course, the middle of the lineup for the Tigers didn't do much, either, as the combination of Harbin, Tyler Colvin and Harvey went a combined 2-for-11. Top Stories