The Ducks headed north for a non-conference series with Seattle this week, and game one showcased the new, stronger Duck offense. Without much pitching to speak of from either ball club, Oregon received some huge performances from their offensive stars in a 12-7 victory over the Red Hawks on Tuesday night.
Freshman Mitchell Tolman had quite the day to start the Washington road trip. He went 3-4 and knocked in a ridiculous 7 RBIs to lead the Ducks to yet another victory over a team from the Pacific Northwest. Tolman’s performance put him right up there among Oregon’s all-time best individual game performances. His 7 RBIs mark is the first time a Duck has brought in seven or more runs since Jack Marder’s 8 RBI day against Nevada in 2010.
The usual production machines were churning away in support of Tolman. Ryon Healy added three RBIs, helping Brett Thomas and Aaron Payne score a total of eight runs at the top of the lineup.
The pitching for this game was unpredictable. After a back and forth run-fest in the first two thirds of the game, Christian Jones, Darrell Hunter, and Derek Smith were able to slow down Seattle’s offense for the final few innings. Jones (1-1) picked up the win while Smith earned the toughest save possible — a three inning save that will serve as the first of his career.
The offense just keeps clicking against bad pitching. As we saw against Stanford, Oregon’s offense has developed enough “venom” to make the opposition pay for its mistakes. When a pitching staff is making a lot of mistakes, these 12 run 13 hit games are bound to happen.
Will batting practice continue tomorrow when the Ducks and Red Hawks meet again tomorrow? We’ll have to see.