Remember when we were pleading for Oregon to have a good performance against an elite starter? Well, the Ducks just delivered in spectacular fashion against one of the premier starters in all of collegiate baseball. It’s no mistake – Mark Appel has been ranked as the number one draft prospect by various scouting services for a while now. Ever since turning down a big signing bonus from the major leagues, the righty has been the premier prospect in college baseball, far and above the rest. With a complete arsenal of velocity, control, and movement, Appel represented the ultimate challenge for the Oregon offense on Friday night. After a grueling battle against the ace, the Ducks were able to load the bases in the ninth inning with the score tied a 1-1. Aaron Payne came to the plate with one away and delivered a walk-off single to defeat Appel and #21 Stanford, 2-1.
It might seem a bit odd that a two run performance from the Oregon offense is receiving so much praise, but after the Ducks’ previous performances against the nation’s most elite pitchers, this is a very impressive victory for the Ducks. Vanderbilt’s Kevin Ziomek, and UCLA’s Adam Plutko had no problem chaining up the Oregon offense, but the pitcher with the nation’s best proven arsenal in Stanford’s Mark Appel was finally cracked by the Duck offense on Friday night.
The Ducks etched their first run to tie the game at 1-1 in the third inning, after Stanford had taken a 1-0 lead in the top half. Ryon Healy picked up Aaron Payne with an RBI single for the Duck’s first tally. After that, both pitchers really settled into grooves, and neither team found any offense until Payne delivered in the ninth inning with the bases loaded.
By no means does this prove that Oregon can chalk themselves up as true contenders just yet, but it does provide a real sense of relief for this team. All of the ridiculous offensive performances that Oregon has put together over the past few weeks weren’t just fluke performances; those were actual strides that the Ducks were making, and it’s nice to see their efforts pay off in a big gime like this one after getting blanked a week ago against UCLA.
Tommy Thorpe’s performance was equally important to the statement win. The lefty scattered nine hits over 6.2 innings, allowing just one run in his no-decision outing. The Oregon bullpen was perfect for the final two innings as Darrell Hunter and Garrett Cleavinger pitched perfect outings in relief of Thorpe.
This win definitely places a set of expectations on this Oregon team now, and formally brands the formula for an Oregon win against elite competition: lockdown pitching, and timely “Horton” offense can truly defeat any caliber of opponent.
Josh is a College Football enthusiast from sunny Southern California. He has written for several self-operated prep sports blogs, as well as multiple SB Nation sites. In High School, Josh played football for four years, and helped create and operate the team’s no-huddle system. Most of Josh’s football knowledge branches from watching College Football his entire life, and is backed up by his first hand experience in both option and spread offenses. Above all, though, he is a proud student at the University of Oregon.
For Football Season: FishDuck Back to Seven Days a Week!
I had to shut down the daily articles on July 20th because I could no longer work the extra 3 to 12 hours per week of certain managerial/editorial duties. (beyond the usual ones with FishDuck)
I’ve had a blast writing without those duties, and now, due to a new agreement with the writers, I can announce that we will have articles seven days a week again. I wish to thank the writers publicly for their graciousness in coming to a solution, as now I still do not have do those extra duties with our agreement, and meanwhile the writers are back having fun creating articles as I am.
Everybody is happy! So below is the new schedule through football season:
Monday: Mr. FishDuck
Tuesday: Darren Perkins
Wednesday: Joshua Whitted & Mr. FishDuck
Thursday: Coach Eric Boles & Alex Heining
Friday: David Marsh
Saturday: Mr. FishDuck (GameDay Baby!)
Sunday: Jordan Ingram
A couple of writers could not join us as they have new projects in their lives, and cannot write for anyone at the moment–but perhaps we will see them back later.
Things rarely work out so well for all parties in agreements, but this time it has and truly….everyone wins!
Our 33 rules at FishDuck can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics. Easy-peasy!
FishDuck members….we got your back. No Trolls Allowed!