The Texas Longhorns used a dominant pitching performance from freshman Chance Ruffin and 16 hits to post a 12-1 win over the Baylor Bears in Big 12 Conference baseball action Friday evening at Baylor Ballpark.
Ruffin (6-3) pitched his first career shutout, fanning a career-high 11 batters to earn the win. The rookie northpaw allowed just one unearned run on seven hits and two walks. Putting in a yeoman's effort, Ruffin threw 150 pitches, including 98 strikes. On the back of Kenn Kasparek's no-hitter on Tuesday, Texas logged back-to-back complete games after having zero through the first 44 games.
The Longhorns used 16 hits to reach double digits in the scoring column for the second consecutive game. The offensive arsenal was spearheaded by Jordan Danks, Brandon Belt, Preston Clark and David Hernandez with three hits apiece. The Horns first 13 hits were singles and they ended up with 14 one-base hits for the game with Danks and Kyle Russell each adding doubles.
Belt was perfect at the plate going 3-for-3 with one walk, one sacrifice bunt, two runs scored and three RBI. Clark went 3-for-4 with three RBI. Hernandez hit 3-for-4 with one run and two RBI. Danks went 3-for-6 with two runs scored and one RBI. Russell was 1-for-2 with four walks, two runs and one RBI.
Texas (28-18, 11-11 Big 12) used small ball to draw first blood in the top of the second. Belt led off the frame by hitting the first of his three opposite field singles to leftfield. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Preston Clark and scored on a two-out single to rightfield by Hernandez staking the Longhorns to a 1-0 lead.
The Longhorns scored another run in similar fashion in the fourth. Russell Moldenhauer hit a leadoff single, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Belt and scored on a single through the right side by Clark to take a 2-0 advantage.
Texas broke the game open with four runs in the top of the fifth. The Longhorns had six straight players reach base with two outs. Travis Tucker singled up the middle and Danks singled to centerfield to start the rally. With runners at the corners, Russell was intentionally walked to load the bases. Moldenhauer drove Tucker for the first run of the inning with a bases-loaded walk. Belt plated Danks and Russell with a single to leftfield and Clark closed out the scoring with a single to centerfield pushing Moldenhauer across and staking Texas to a 6-0 lead.
After Baylor (27-21, 9-13 Big 12) scored a run in the fifth, the Longhorns put the game out of reach with three runs in the visitor half of the seventh. With one out, Russell walked and Moldenhauer singled through the right side to put runners at the corners. Belt drove in Russell with an RBI single to leftfield. Runey Davis replaced Moldenhauer at second as a pinch runner and was brought home for his third score of the season on a single laced through the right side by Clark while advancing Belt to scoring position. An RBI single by David Hernandez drove in Belt for the final score of the inning inflating the cushion to 9-1.
Russell hit an RBI double in the eighth and the Horns scored two runs in the ninth, one on a Baylor error and one on a double by Danks.
Kendal Volz (3-5) was the tough-luck loser for Baylor. He was effective through three innings, allowing just one run on three hits and one walk while striking out seven Longhorns, but was forced the leave the game with a strained oblique. Texas roughed up the Bears' relievers for 11 runs, nine earned on 13 hits and six walks over the last six innings.
Texas and Baylor shift to Austin for game two of the series on Saturday with first pitch slated for 2:36 p.m. at UFCU Disch-Falk Field.