Junior catcher Eric Terry congratulates sophomore third baseman Chris Stern on a job well done in a road win against North Carolina Wesleyan College Feb. 18. Stern leads the team with a .528 batting average and has tallied the most RBIs with 16. Courtesy of Dave Hilbert

Emory’s bats went cold Tuesday night in a 5-0 loss to Berry College (Ga.). Earlier this past weekend, the Emory baseball team went 1-1 in a back-to-back series on the road against the North Carolina Wesleyan College Bishops Feb. 18. Emory overcame a two-run deficit in the final inning of the first game to take home a 7-5 victory and fell to the Bishops 5-3 in the second.

After the split and Tuesday night’s game, Emory’s record is now at 4-5.

Tuesday night, sophomore third baseman Christopher Stern amassed two singles, accounting for Emory’s only hits on the evening. Freshman pitcher Jack Moore put together a strong effort on the mound, allowing two runs (one earned) on seven hits, no walks and three strikeouts in five and a third innings.

Emory triumphed in the first half of the two-game series, topping the Bishops 7-5. Sophomore pitcher Richard Brereton started the game for the Eagles. After the Bishops blanked the Emory offense in the top of the first, Brereton gave up a solo shot in the bottom of the inning to give the Bishops a 1-0 lead.

Despite the solo blast, Brereton recovered and retired his next five batters. Emory struck back in the top of the third, grabbing a 3-1 lead. Stern put the Eagles on the scoreboard, bringing in a baserunner on an RBI double. Brereton tacked on two more runs with a base hit up the middle of the infield.

Emory maintained its 3-1 lead until the bottom of the fifth inning, when the Bishops bounced back with a four-run inning.

The Bishops’ barrage began with a leadoff single. During the ensuing at-bat, the Wesleyan base-runner sophomore designated hitter Nick Beaver scurried to second base after a wild-pitch and advanced to third base after another single. Unable to work out of the jam, Brereton balked, advancing the third-base runner across home plate.

Sophomore pitcher Richard Brereton goes in for the swing as enemy North Carolina Wesleyan College observes from the bench. Brereton, senior first baseman Bubby Terp and Stern have all together accumulated more than half of the team’s RBIs this season. Courtesy of Dave Hilbert

Matters only became worse for Brereton. His day came to an end after two runners crossed home plate due to a throwing error from senior shortstop Nick Chambers.

Freshman pitcher Jared Gaer came in relief of Brereton and cleaned up the mess, retiring all three batters he faced in the inning and giving up only one more run on a sacrifice fly.

Barring a tie ballgame, the first game of the double-header was scheduled to end in seven innings since the Wesleyan stadium has no lights and the two games had to finish before dark.

Headed into the top of the seventh inning, the Eagles were up against the wall, down two runs with one last chance to bat. Emory rallied, matching Wesleyan’s four-running inning with one of their own.

Stern, senior first baseman Bubby Terp and sophomore second baseman Ryan Adelman all drove in runs. Another Emory baserunner, Brereton, was brought home on a wild pitch.

Gaer kept the Bishops off the scoreboard in the bottom of the seventh and locked in Emory’s 7-5 victory.

The Eagles met a different fate in the second game, falling to the Bishops 5-3.

Head Coach Mike Twardoski said that it was difficult for the team to play a double-header after an intense day of traveling and a closely contested first game.

“We traveled eight hours to play a doubleheader and the guys got tired by the second game,” Twardoski said. “In the first game we came out swinging well and our bats were great, but by the second game we didn’t have the same level of success.”

Senior pitcher Mack Wilkins started on the mound for Emory and lasted only two and two-thirds innings after giving up two runs on three hits and three walks. After Wilkins’s start, five other Emory pitchers contributed to getting the team through five and a third innings.

Increasing their margin to five, Wesleyan added one run in the fourth and two in the fifth. In the meantime, Wesleyan’s starting pitcher junior J.D. Makauskas completed seven shutout innings, giving up four hits and a walk with six strikeouts.

Twardoski said the team should have competed better against Makauskas and utilized a more effective gameplan.

“We should have hit better and had better gameplans at the plate in the second game,” Twardoski said. “[Makauskas] was a fine pitcher, but we could have easily hit him better than we did since nothing he did was overwhelming.”

The Eagles decreased the deficit in the top of the eighth, scoring three runs on three hits from Brereton, Stern and Terp.

Despite the three-run eighth inning, the Eagles could not to replicate that success in the top of the ninth and lost the game 5-3.

Twardoski said the team needs more contributions from the bottom of the batting order to complement the success of the leadoff hitters.

“Our players at the bottom of the order have to string some better at-bats together,” Twardoski said. “They’re swinging out of the strike right now, but they’re capable of putting some good at-bats together to bring us back to the start of the lineup.”

Sophomore pitcher Richard Brereton said although the Eagles have had a lackluster start, the team is gaining valuable time on the field.

“We’re improving every game and playing well as a team,” Brereton said. “We’re talented and young, we just need experience as the season goes on and we’ll keep improving.”

Terp, Stern and Brereton are Emory’s three most productive hitters thus far. Together they have accumulated more than half of the team’s RBIs. Stern leads the team with a .528 batting average and has tallied the most RBIs with 16.

The Eagles have a week off before they are scheduled to play Birmingham Southern College (Ala.) Feb. 28.

Associate Editor Brian Taggett is a pitcher on Emory’s baseball team.

Freshman right-handed pitcher Jack Moore sends the ball to Oglethorpe University (Ga.), Feb. 13. Ayushi Agarwal/Staff.

Emory baseball delivered a statement win Tuesday night with a 13-1 demolition of Atlanta rival Oglethorpe University. The offensive explosion came on the heels of a lackluster 2-3 start to the season.

Prior to their meeting with Oglethorpe, Emory split a two-game series on the road against the Covenant College (Ga.) Scots, Feb. 9. Through the team’s first five games, the Eagles allowed a total of 36 runs. In comparison, the Eagles began their 2017 campaign 5-0 with only 15 runs allowed.

In the first game of Friday’s doubleheader, the Scots dominated in a commanding 8-3 victory. Covenant jumped ahead early with two runs on four hits and an error against Emory’s starting pitcher, sophomore Richard Brereton, in the first inning.

Covenant added one more run in the bottom of the second, establishing a 3-0 lead. Despite giving up three runs in the first two innings, Brereton found his stride on the mound in the third and fourth innings, striking out two Scots in each.

Emory reduced the deficit in the top of the fourth after sophomore third baseman Christopher Stern’s two run triple found the gap between the center and right fielders.

Breathing down the necks of the Scots with the score at 3-2, the Eagles quickly lost momentum in the bottom of the fifth when Covenant extended the lead by four runs. Brereton started the inning on the mound but was quickly sent to the bench after a Covenant two-run home run with no outs. In relief, freshman pitcher Jared Gaer allowed two more runs, one unearned.

Down five, Emory was unable to stage a comeback. Both teams scored one more run as the Scots coasted to an 8-3 win, their first on the season.

Junior second baseman Thomas Baumgartner slugs one of his two hits in a win against Oglethorpe University (Ga.) Feb. 13. Ayushi Agarwhal/Staff.

Head Coach Mike Twardoski said that the team struggled to limit bad innings and string together effective at-bats in the first game.

“[In] the first game, we gave up too many hits in a row and they scored multiple runs in two different innings,” Twardoski said. “We got single hits in the first and therefore weren’t able to drive too many players home.”

The Eagles turned the tables on the Scots in the second half of the back-to-back, claiming a 10-4 victory.

Much like the first game, the Eagles found themselves playing from behind early. Covenant pounced on Emory in the first, scoring four runs on five hits and an error. Emory’s starting pitcher, senior Rhett Stuart, saw his day come to an early close after the ugly first inning.

Entering the game in the second inning, freshman pitcher Christian Bradley salvaged the game for the Eagles. In his three innings of work, Bradley kept Covenant hitless and struck out three batters. Bradley gave credit to his defense and cited a number of situations when they backed him up on the mound.

“Brereton in centerfield made an amazing play to take away a potential double,” Bradley said. “First baseman [senior] Bubby Terp was in the right place at the right time when Covenant hit a hard line drive at him.”

Offensively, the Eagles hit their stride in the fourth and fifth innings. Stern scored from third base on a ground out and freshman left fielder Jack Rubenstein scored on a wild pitch in the fourth, trimming the lead to 4-2.

Twardoski said that Stern has been one of Emory’s “hottest players” thus far, carrying a .632 batting average with a home run in his first five games.

In the fifth, the Eagles blasted Covenant with a six-run breakout inning. Senior shortstop Nick Chambers initiated the scoring after launching a double into left, bringing home an Emory baserunner. Brereton (playing centerfield in game two) delivered the biggest at-bat of the afternoon, driving in three Eagles off a double into centerfield.

Emory didn’t look back after they built an 8-4 lead in the top of the fifth, holding Covenant scoreless and adding two more runs of their own in the final two innings.

Emory’s pitching improved after they allowed five hits in the first. Bradley, along with relief pitchers sophomore Michael Leeder and junior Charlie Redovian, held Covenant hitless for six consecutive innings.

Bradley said that many of the team’s early struggles were due to inexperience and an injury to the team’s “ace,” junior pitcher Billy Dimlow.

“Dimlow is out indefinitely with elbow issues,” Bradley said. “We have lost so many pitchers from last year, so we’re a very young staff that is inexperienced, but also has a lot of potential.”

Twardoski emphasized the team’s lack of consistency early in the season.

“Whenever I analyze the players on this team, it’s obvious that we have a lot of talent,” Twardoski said. “We have to be a lot more consistent considering we haven’t started off the season the way we wanted to.”

The performance against Oglethorpe was unquestionably a step in the right direction, with the Eagles pounding in nine runs in the first inning alone.

The Eagles’ Feb. 10 game against Covenant College was postponed due to inclement weather. Emory will travel to Rocky Mount, N.C. for a series against North Carolina Wesleyan College Feb. 17.

Associate Editor Brian Taggett is a pitcher on Emory’s baseball team.

The Emory baseball team is going full speed ahead into the Statcast era of baseball with the hiring of new Pitching Coach Ryan Mossman. The 23-year-old newcomer said he has plans to take Emory’s pitching staff to the next level using advanced analytics.

Despite having no prior experience in coaching, Mossman fits a growing trend in baseball programs at both the professional and collegiate levels — utilizing physics to more effectively determine players’ strengths and weaknesses.

Mossman said his experience with baseball analytics began when he worked over the summer as an intern at TrackMan, a company that produces the trailblazing technology changing the face of baseball through advanced statistics. Along with the more popularly known Statcast, TrackMan is a force in the growing interest among baseball programs throughout the country in delving into analytics.

Observing a lack of utilization of these groundbreaking mechanisms, Mossman said that he wanted to start coaching to help baseball programs get the most productivity from their athletes.

“I was inspired a while ago after reading ‘Moneyball,’ and what fascinated me was the story about [former Major Leaguer] Scott Hatteberg,” Mossman said. “I wanted to see how many players like Hatteberg were out there, and see how you can use different methods to make a player more valuable.”

Hatteberg’s perceived value rose in the eyes of the Oakland Athletics scouts when they began to reconsider the importance of a player’s on-base percentage (OBP). The Athletics’ strategy soon spread across Major League Baseball (MLB), forever changing how players are evaluated.

Mossman said analytics is a way to better understand the talents of a wide range of players. He pointed to the example of a pitcher’s spin rate, explaining that it could be as significant a variable as a pitcher’s velocity.

“When it came to how to decipher between kids or get the most out of their talent, I started to learn that even though certain guys didn’t have top velocities, their high spin rates could be of just as high a value,” Mossman said.

Mossman took an unconventional path on his way to holding the title of Head Pitching Coach at Emory. He first made his way to Atlanta after he graduated from Shenandoah University (Va.) with a degree in sports management. At Shenandoah, he played as a pitcher on the Division III baseball team.

Mossman worked for Passion City Church in Buckhead, Ga., interning with the church’s production team and record label. While he worked at the church, he had a growing desire to get back into the game of baseball and applied for the position of pitching coach at Emory.

A recent college graduate, Mossman is still finding his identity as a collegiate baseball coach.

“There is a tension between being a friend with these guys and being a coach, that’s something I struggle with on a daily basis,” Mossman said. “I balance this by connecting with them on a personal level, but also I am trying to get the best out of them, so we can compete at the next level.”

One of the members of Mossman’s pitching staff, sophomore pitcher Richard Brereton said that Mossman is helping the staff emphasize certain aspects of the game more than the team has in the past.

“Coach Mossman has highlighted the importance of throwing strikes and making the defense work,” Brereton said. “This hasn’t changed from anything that we have learned, but he is helping us emphasize other aspects of the game.”

Given the complexity of some of Mossman’s analytics, he said that he is working to make his methods usable for his pitchers and the rest of the coaching staff.

“This being my first season, I’m trying to figure out how to blend coaching with all of these analytics,” Mossman said. “If I can make all of this information comprehensible and help the players put this into practice, it will improve our player development.”

Brereton said he’s seen some of Mossman’s techniques in action, noting the high-tech mediums of analyzing the team’s pitchers.

“[Mossman] has had some of our pitchers use an arm sleeve with a tracker in it, called Motus,” Brereton said. “What Motus does is track a pitcher’s every throw. It can track spin rate, arm angle and arm speed. He does this to help us become more consistent.”

After the Eagles split a pair of games against Piedmont College (Ga.) Feb. 3, allowing a total of 16 runs in the two games, the team fell hard to LaGrange College (Ga.) Feb. 6 in a 8-0 defeat, dropping the team’s record to 1-2 on the season.

Emory will have another opportunity to put Mossman’s techniques into practice next weekend in a three-game series against Covenant College (Ga.). The first game will be on the road at Covenant Feb. 9. The two teams will then play a doubleheader at Emory Feb. 10 in the Eagles’ first home games of the 2018 season.

The Major League Baseball (MLB) postseason is quickly approaching, and the stage is set for an exciting battle that will determine the top players  of the baseball world. The postseason is bound to keep baseball fans on the edge of their seats; many of this season’s storylines have already etched their place in baseball history.

Perhaps the most noteworthy event of the season was the Cleveland Indians’ incredible 22-game winning streak. This streak marked the second longest in MLB history, four games shy of the New York Giants’ 1916 26-game winning streak, and the longest in American League (AL) history. Starting Aug. 24, the Indians began stringing together win after win against the Boston Red Sox, Kansas City Royals, New York Yankees, Detroit Tigers, Chicago White Sox and Baltimore Orioles. Their streak ended Sept. 15, when the Royals finally handed the Indians a 4-3 defeat.

The Indians’ elite starting pitching energized their streak. Cleveland’s pitching has been the best in the AL, as they are the only team that has not yet given up more than 600 runs this season. The ace of their staff, Corey Kluber, dominated during the winning streak, tallying four wins and allowing only five earned runs during that span. Kluber has made a serious case as a candidate for the Cy Young Award, awarded to the best pitcher in the American and National Leagues, with an 18-4 record on the year. On top of 18 wins, Kluber also has struck out 262 batters and has a 2.27 earned run average (ERA). The most viable contender to Kluber for the AL Cy Young is Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale, who has a 17-7 record, 300 strikeouts and a 2.75 ERA.

Cleveland’s potent offense also contributed to their win streak. The Indians scored five or more runs 14 times over the course of the 22-game span. Third baseman Jose Ramirez has been a catalyst for the Indians lineup, leading the Indians in batting average. Other key players in the Indians’ offensive prowess are shortstop Francisco Lindor, who has a .277 batting average and 33 home runs, and designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion, who leads the team with 37 home runs.

As it stands, the Indians have the best record in the AL and are the AL Central Division champions. Joining the Indians in the AL playoff are the Houston Astros (the AL West champions), as well as the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, both of whom are still vying for the AL East pennant. The Minnesota Twins claim the final wild card spot and are five games ahead of the next best team, the Los Angeles Angels.

In the National League (NL), the Los Angeles Dodgers have undoubtedly been the strongest team. They have a 99-57 record and have given up less than 600 runs over the season. Powerhouse pitcher Clayton Kershaw made mincemeat of his opponents, delivering a Cy Young-worthy performance with an 18-4 record, 200 strikeouts and a 2.21 ERA. Along with Kershaw, the Dodgers have received ample production from third baseman Justin Turner, who has a .321 batting average, second in the NL to Colorado Rockies center fielder Charlie Blackmon. Also benefiting the Dodgers offense is rookie sensation first baseman Cody Bellinger, who has 39 home runs.

With the powerful combination of Kershaw and Turner, the Dodgers have earned themselves the NL West pennant. Other teams to clinch playoff spots in the NL include the Washington Nationals, who won the NL East, and the Arizona Diamondbacks, who nabbed a wild card spot. In the NL Central, the Chicago Cubs are a game away from winning the division. The final wild card spot is currently a three-team race between the Rockies, Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinals.

The MLB shattered its single season record for total home runs in a season this year, making it a special year for power hitters. Two of the year’s most entertaining players are Miami Marlins right fielder Giancarlo Stanton and Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge. Both players have adopted the home run as the crux of their game and are first and second in the MLB in home runs, respectively. Stanton has smashed 57 home runs, 31 of which have come after the All-Star break. Also a prominent home-run hitter, Judge has hit 50 home runs of his own. This mark set a record for most home runs by a rookie in a single season. Judge did much of his damage before the All-Star break, hitting 30 of his 50 home runs. On a national stage, Judge used his six-foot seven-inch frame to showcase his power as he won the Home Run Derby. Although Judge cooled off substantially after the All-Star break, he has reemerged in September with 11 home runs and a .284 batting average.

Stanton’s and Judge’s power symbolize this exciting MLB season. With the AL and NL Wild Card games Oct. 3 and 4, respectively, teams have less than a week to secure their entry to the 2017 postseason.

From getting cut his freshman season to preparing for a career in aerospace engineering, Hernandez has accomplished much both on and off the field in his time at Emory.
From getting cut his freshman season to preparing for a career in aerospace engineering, senior outfielder Brian Hernandez has accomplished a lot both on and off the field. Photo Courtesy of Emory Athletics.

After he overslept the last day of baseball tryouts run by a coach known for his demand for punctuality, then-freshman Brian Hernandez knew he had his work cut out for him. The now-senior outfielder and designated hitter, who was cut from the team his freshman year but managed to win a spot his sophomore year, is now approaching the end of a highly successful stint on the Emory baseball team. Hernandez’s turbulent start to his Emory baseball career made his rise to success as a key member of the team even more impressive. Hernandez compiled a career batting average of .348, registering six home runs, 17 doubles and 84 RBIs in 106 games. During his junior year, selected Hernandez to the All-South Region third team, and the UAA named him to their first team.

The Emory Wheel spoke with Hernandez about his Cuban heritage, hometown community in South Florida and his plans after graduation.

This transcript has been edited for clarity and length.

Stephen Mattes, The Emory Wheel: What makes baseball so special to you?

Brian Hernandez: As a kid I really fell in love with the game because there are so many intricacies to it. It is one of the truest athletic games there is as far as combining athleticism and physical attributes with skill and mental components. I love that there are no time constraints. I grew up with the game of baseball. My parents were born in Cuba, a big baseball country. Then they moved to Miami, where there is also a big baseball community.

EW: What do you consider the defining moment of your Emory baseball career?

BH: I was actually cut my freshman year. I felt like I was doing well during the fall tryout period. I then got an ear infection and did not wake up to my alarm for the last day of tryouts, which ended up being a parents’ weekend. I ended up showing up to the field 45 minutes late after being a couple of minutes late the prior week. Head Coach [Mike Twardoski] emphasizes punctuality a lot. Usually his rule is that if you are not there 15 minutes early you’re late. So showing up to practice 45 minutes late was really an hour late. That ended up being the dealbreaker, and I did not make the team my freshman year. This really drove me over that summer to get a lot better and stronger. I then ended up playing a bit the next year, more than a normal incoming [player] would, and then I earned the starting role in my junior year. As much as it hurt to be cut and not [play] baseball for a whole year, without that I wouldn’t be where I am today.

EW: Do you think the team has lived up to expectations this year?

BH: Yes and no. This was supposed to be a big year for us because we have 10 seniors. Every single one of these seniors has a big role on the team, and we all play regularly. There were high expectations, especially coming into a year after we reached the World Series three years in a row. In the beginning half of the season, we definitely lived up to and exceeded our expectations, and then we went on a little bit of a skid, [during] which everyone was kind of confused. Nobody really knew what was going on and we had alumni and parents texting us. We were meeting with the coaches, trying to figure things out. Luckily now we have picked it back up a little bit. Hopefully, we will end up living up to and exceeding our expectations.

EW: Which baseball player do you most look up to?

BH: My favorite is the late Jose Fernandez. He was a pillar of the South Florida community and the Cuban community. Not only with being the great young pitcher that he was — the way he played the game of baseball was electrifying. He clearly had a lot of passion for the game. He also had a lot of fun playing the game, which is something I try to do as much as I can because at the end of the day it is a game. You get frustrated about not being able to help your team if you get out or you make an error … [but] you should have fun playing because if not there is no reason to be playing it. It was a very emotional time for the South Florida community when he ended up passing away. The best way to honor his memory is to continue to play the way he did.

EW: What are your plans after graduation?

BH: Right now I am kind of testing out the water. I don’t know exactly what I’m going to do right now. Because of baseball I haven’t had a ton of work experience in the field, but I am graduating with a physics major and a math minor, and I am looking to go into aerospace engineering. My goal is to first get an internship at the Kennedy Space Center, which would be my dream, and then go from there. That will help me decide if I want to go to graduate school for aerospace engineering or if I want to do research, astrophysics or just regular engineering.
Hernandez and the Eagles will host the New York University Violets April 21, in their last series of the regular season.

Entering play April 8 to 9 on the heels of a six-game losing streak, the Emory baseball team found their stride with a four-game sweep on the road against the Brandeis University (Mass.) Judges. Emory’s four wins against Brandeis improved their UAA conference record to 6-6 and their overall record to 23-11.

After the series’ initial game was cancelled due to inclement weather April 7, the Eagles were scheduled to have back-to-back doubleheaders April 8 and April 9. All games were reduced to seven innings and played at University of Massachusetts Boston due to the unplayable field conditions at Brandeis’ home field.

The Eagles’ first bout of the weekend ended in a convincing 6-0 shutout against the Judges April 8. Senior pitcher Jackson Weeg took to the mound for Emory and delivered a dominant performance. Weeg limited Brandeis to three hits, shutting out the Judges through seven innings and tallying 11 strikeouts in the process.

Emory found the scoreboard early in the game when junior first baseman Bubby Terp stole home in the second inning. The Eagles did not score again until the fourth inning, when the team added four more runs to their lead.

Terp, senior third baseman Philip Maldari, senior catcher Chris Young and freshman shortstop Richard Brereton recorded RBIs in the inning off of four hits, a walk and a Brandeis error. Emory added one more run in the seventh to finish the game leading by six. Terp recorded impressive numbers in the game, going two for three with a double and an RBI.

Sophomore pitcher Billy Dimlow continued the trend from earlier in the day in the second game, keeping Brandeis scoreless in a 3-0 victory. Dimlow was just as successful as Weeg, allowing only three hits with no runs or walks and 10 strikeouts in seven innings pitched.

Once again, the Eagles snatched an early lead thanks to Brereton’s two-run double. Emory was set to glide to the finish line with a two-run lead, when they added one more run on senior second baseman Jeff Ronpirin’s single in the seventh. Ronpirin scorched the Brandeis pitchers, going a solid three of four with two doubles and an RBI.

The Eagles handled the Judges with ease in their first match-up April 9 with a 10-0 shutout. Emory crossed the plate three times in the first inning on three hits and a Brandeis error. Emory added two runs to their lead and took four walks in the second inning.

The Eagles scored three more runs in the fifth and two in the seventh to amass a ten-run margin over the Judges. Senior pitcher Luke Emmett had a terrific day on the mound, giving up no runs on five hits and one walk through six innings. Sophomore pitcher Charlie Redovian took the mound in the seventh inning, helping Emory triumph 10-0.

Senior pitcher Andrew Doetsch noted some of the areas that Emory improved this weekend.

“We came out ready to play,” Doetsch said. “All of our starters went deep and everybody had great games. The pitching was really dominant and were in command their entire time on the mound.”

Senior designated hitter Brian Hernandez emphasized how the team’s confidence helped give them the edge they needed.

“We needed a certain cockiness and we got it back this weekend in Boston,” Hernandez said. “Everybody looked confident on the mound, at the plate and on the field.”

Completing the four-game sweep, Emory defeated Brandeis in a game decided in the final inning. Combined, three pitchers — junior Rhett Stuart, sophomore Mack Wilkins and senior Kyle Monk — allowed two earned runs on eight hits.

Emory trailed through the first five innings after Brandeis drove in a run in the first inning. The Eagles finally struck in the top of the sixth on Terp’s two-run homerun that drove in Ronpirin. Trailing by one, Brandeis was able to tie the game in the bottom of the sixth with a one-run single.

With the game knotted up at two in the final inning, senior left fielder Wilson Morgan gave Emory a one-run advantage with an RBI single. After getting the last out in the sixth inning, Monk took the one-run lead into the bottom of the seventh and recorded his seventh win of the season.

Doetsch mentioned the success of the team’s seniors.

“All of the seniors together had a ball this weekend,” Doetsch said. “They were all playing great games and having tons of fun. They were smashing the ball.”

Stringing together a set of strong performances, the Eagles delivered a nearly flawless weekend, allowing only two runs in four games and outscoring the Judges 22-2.

Hernandez noted how the pitching helped lead the way for Emory during the weekend.

“Everybody across the board was solid on the mound,” Hernandez said. “The pitchers set the tone by having the level of energy and confidence that they did.”

Emory continued their success from the weekend with a 19-3 rout of Oglethorpe University April 11. Emory will head to Chappell Park against’s No. 3 team Birmingham-Southern College (Ala.) April 18.

Junior infielder Nick Chambers dives to beat the tag in the Eagles' series at Washington University in St. Louis (Mo.). Photo Courtesy of Grace Burton.
Junior infielder Nick Chambers dives to beat the tag in the Eagles’ series at Washington University in St. Louis (Mo.). Photo Courtesy of Grace Burton.

The Emory baseball team suffered a four-game sweep in a series against their UAA foe, the Washington University in St. Louis (Mo.) Bears. Emory’s losses this past weekend stretched their losing streak to six games. The Eagles have struggled as of late, dropping nine of their past 11 games.

Head Coach Mike Twardoski said that the team is struggling with some of the basics and that he needs to figure out how to help his team rediscover their winning ways.

“We are playing tight, missing the signs and not bunting well,” Twardoski said. “We are not doing the little things that win games. My job is to figure out what button to push because we are still working hard and we are still energetic.”

Emory began the four-game series March 31 on the road with a 3-0 loss. Washington pitcher, freshman Brad Margolin, nearly no-hit the Eagles, allowing only one hit in the game. Marking an impressive performance, Margolin recorded a complete game with one hit and one walk with nine strikeouts.

Emory sophomore pitcher Billy Dimlow had a solid day on the rubber as well. He allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits and a walk. Despite Emory’s solid showing from the mound, Emory’s batters did not figure out how solve Margolin. Junior shortstop Nick Chambers had Emory’s only hit with a single in the sixth inning.

Although the Eagles got on the scoreboard, Emory dropped the first half of a doubleheader 6-2 April 1. Three errors in the field plagued Emory’s hopes of victory as the Eagles allowed four unearned runs.

Senior pitcher Jackson Weeg led the Eagles on the mound, pitching a solid seven and one-third innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on four hits. He also tallied four walks and 10 strikeouts.

Weeg said that the work he’s done to improve his game has helped him better contribute to the team.

“I have been working hard to make adjustments,” Weeg said. “The work has been paying off and I saw that this weekend. Mostly I am trying to put the team in position to win.”

With the game tied at two heading into the eighth, Washington scored four runs to grasp a 6-2 lead. Entering the game with one out and a man on first, Monk struggled to keep Washington from crossing the plate.

Emory’s batters put together another lackluster performance in the second half of the doubleheader April 1. A three-run first inning catapulted Washington to a 5-2 triumph over the Eagles.

Starting for Emory, senior pitcher Luke Emmett had a forgettable day on the mound, allowing four runs on four hits and five walks through four innings. After Washington burst ahead of Emory with a three-run first inning, the Eagles failed to answer back.

Emory scored runs in the third and seventh innings, but were never able to string together a breakthrough. Washington’s pitchers held Emory in check, allowing only four hits. The Bears added two more runs of their own in the fifth and sixth innings, walking away with a third straight win against the Eagles.

Failing to salvage the final game of the series, Emory fell 7-5 to Washington April 2. The Eagles flew out to an early lead, scoring a run in the second inning on a Washington throwing error. Monk helped Emory maintain the lead through five innings, yielding only two hits to the Washington batters.

The Bears fought back in the sixth and were able to tie the game at one apiece. Emory responded with a vengeance at the top of the seventh, knocking four runs across the plate. Senior third-baseman Philip Maldari drove in two runs in the inning with a double.

Leading the game 5-1 heading to the bottom of the seventh, Emory seemed poised for victory but to their dismay, Washington answered back. Monk and freshman relief pitcher  Richard Brereton combined to give up six runs to Washington in the seventh. Adding to the Eagles’ frustration, Twardoski was ejected in the disastrous inning for arguing balls and strikes.

Emory did not respond in the eighth or ninth innings and went home winless for the weekend. Emory’s record faltered to 19-11 and 2-6 in UAA conference play.

Despite the team’s losing streak, Twardoski praised his team’s effort and suggested that improvement may require nothing more than a tighter focus.

“This team is one of the hardest working team’s I’ve been around,” Twardoski said. “We have too big a scope. Instead, we need to worry about one pitch at a time.”

Weeg mentioned that it will take a team effort to make this change.

“The pitching staff batters have struggled at times,” Weeg said. “But it has been a team effort the entire season and in order to get out of this slump it will take the whole team getting together and moving past what has been a tough 10 games.”

The Eagles will return to the diamond April 7, traveling to Waltham, Mass. to face Brandeis University.


Senior Outfielder Wilson Morgan scored three runs in the Eagles' epic final game against Case Western Reserve (Ohio) that featured six lead changes and a total of 35 runs. Gemy Sethaputra/Senior Staff
Senior Outfielder Wilson Morgan scored three runs in the Eagles’ epic final game against Case Western Reserve (Ohio) that featured six lead changes and a total of 35 runs. Gemy Sethaputra/Senior Staff

Emory’s baseball team split a four-game series with Case Western Reserve University (Ohio) this past weekend, winning the first two games with scores of 11-1 and 4-0, and falling in the second two by tallies of 11-2 and 20-15. The Eagles played a pair of doubleheaders Friday March 24 and Saturday March 25. The story of the weekend was Emory’s pitching staff, which, after allowing only one run during the first two games, conceded 31 runs in the final two.

While Emory’s pitching has been their strongest weapon this season, Head Coach Mike Twardoski noted that the bullpen had an uncharacteristically difficult series.

“We didn’t get very good innings out of [the] bullpen at the end,” Twardoski said. “Pitching has been the trademark of our team the last few years and we’ll have to work to get our pitching back in order to make a run.”

The team’s 20-15 loss in the final game of the weekend was particularly heartbreaking. After a back and forth game that saw six lead changes, the Eagles led the Spartans by a score of 15-12 going into the top of the ninth. However, Emory couldn’t hold onto its advantage as senior pitcher Kyle Monk and sophomore pitcher Charlie Redovian gave up a combined eight runs on eight hits, allowing Case Western to take a stranglehold on the game.

At the plate, senior designated hitter Jeff Ronpirin, junior first baseman Bubby Terp and sophomore second baseman NJ Kim combined for eight hits, seven RBIs and four walks to spearhead the Emory bats. As a team, Emory managed 13 hits and 13 walks in the final game of the series.

Monk and sophomore pitcher Billy Dimlow carried the Eagles in the first two games of the weekend. Monk was the hero of the series’ first game, throwing a one-run complete game and notching seven strikeouts. In the next game, Dimlow followed Monk’s spectacular performance with a dominating game of his own, throwing eight innings and logging eight strikeouts.

Twardoski praised Monk and Dimlow’s performances at the start of the weekend.

“To have our closer [Monk] take a starter’s role and go seven [innings] was huge,” Twardoski said. “Getting eight scoreless innings from Dimlow too was a great way to start the weekend.”

Sophomore centerfielder David Draper made a huge impact on offense, going six for eight over the two games with two doubles, a home run and five RBIs. Additionally, senior shortstop Nick Chambers had a pair of hits and two walks in the first game and Kim went two for three with two RBIs in the second.

Emory will travel to St. Louis, Mo., this weekend to take on Washington University in St. Louis in a four-game series between March 31 and April 2. The first game is Friday at 4 p.m.

Emory baseball dropped its first three-game series of the season, losing two of three against the Covenant College (Ga.) Scots. Despite the weekend losses, the Eagles’ record remains 17-5.

After a 4-1 victory against’s No. 4 team Birmingham Southern University (Ala.) March 15, the Eagles hoped to build off that success in their home series against Covenant. The Eagles flew out of the dugout, jumping to a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Junior first baseman Bubby Terp knocked in two runs on a double along the right field line.

Sophomore starting pitcher Billy Dimlow held Covenant scoreless for the first four innings before yielding two runs to the Scots in the top of the fifth. With the game tied at two, Emory regained the lead in the bottom of the inning after a Covenant fielding error allowing two runs to cross home plate.

Yielding one more run in his start, Dimlow completed a strong afternoon on the mound, allowing three earned runs on six hits and two walks in seven innings. With Dimlow out of the game, senior pitcher Kyle Monk came in looking for his fifth save this season in the eighth. With scoreless eighth and ninth innings, Monk struck out three Covenant batters. In the meantime, Emory added three more runs in the seventh and eighth innings to win the game 7-3.

Dimlow attributed part of his strong start to the dynamic between himself and his catcher, junior Mitch Kerner.

“Part of my success has come because I’ve had great chemistry with my catcher,” Dimlow said. “He’s been calling pitches that have allowed me to stay consistent and to execute.”

Superb performances from Dimlow and senior left fielder Wilson Morgan paved the way to the Eagles’ victory. Dimlow continues to build a strong resume this season, recording his fourth win in six starts. Morgan went two for three batting with two doubles, an RBI and two walks.

Dimlow spoke about his ability to throw his slider for strikes and how it has helped him to dominate his opponents.

“The slider is a pitch that I can throw in any count and feel confident,” Dimlow said. “I have been able to throw different types of sliders and have relied on them almost like a crutch.”

Emory looked to build a winning streak against Covenant in a doubleheader March 18 in Lookout Mountain, Ga. In an offensive battle, the Eagles fell short in a 12-10 defeat.

The Scots battered senior pitcher Luke Emmett, who gave up seven runs on five hits and seven walks in the two and one third innings that he pitched. Following Emmett’s rough start, freshman pitcher John Ross sought to cool off the Covenant bats. Despite the pitching change, Covenant continued their prolific offensive display, knocking three more runs in Ross’s two and two-thirds innings pitched.

Covenant built a 9-0 lead in the first four innings. Emory battled back in innings five through six, bringing home 10 runs of their own, but after allowing Covenant to pick up in the fifth and sixth innings, the Eagles remained unable to claim a lead.

Despite the loss, Twardoski said that his team fought hard to get back into the game.

“Coming back is what we have done all year,” Twardoski said. “We had some really good energy, and some guys had some great at-bats, but we gave up a two-run home run, and if we  hadn’t we probably would have tied.”

Perhaps most damaging to the Eagles on the mound were Covenant’s three home runs. Prior to the first game of this series, Emory’s pitchers allowed only three home runs in the season’s first 19 games.

Head Coach Mike Twardoski noted the Eagles’ poor pitch locations on the home runs.

“When you give up a home run, the ball is up in the zone,” Twardoski said. “We have to pitch to better locations.”

In the second half of the doubleheader, Emory edged a 1-0 lead in the first three innings. The Eagles’ run came on a walk with the bases loaded to freshman third baseman Ryan Adelman.

On the rubber for Emory, senior pitcher Philip Maldari kept the Covenant bats silent in the first three innings. At the bottom of the fourth inning, Maldari yielded two runs to Covenant.

Emory lost control in the bottom of the fifth as Covenant marked four runs on four hits, including a home run. Maldari did not make it through the inning, ending the day with three earned runs on four hits in four innings. Emory’s pitching gave up eight runs in a seven inning game, while Emory’s bats were stymied with only two runs. The Eagles finished the day with an 8-2 defeat.

Dimlow emphasized that pitching is the key factor in determining Emory’s success.

“When our pitching has started well we have been able to win games,” Dimlow said. “Ever since we lost our first game, we have struggled somewhat on the mound. Pitching should be the strongest part of the team.”

Twardoski criticized his team’s approach, stressing that his players must be more poised and prepared to compete in every game.

“My concern is that we’re not ready to play,” Twardoski said. “We are not quick, there’s no energy or camaraderie from a few of us. We need more consistency and [to] have fun playing. It seems that some guys are tired and it’s a bad dynamic now.”

Rounding out the nonconference portion of their schedule, the Eagles fell 9-4 to LaGrange College (Ga.) March 21. Emory will begin University Athletic Association (UAA) play March 24,  hosting Case Western Reserve University (Ohio).