The biggest positive to come out of Oklahoma's five-run ninth Friday was the ability to keep closer Jacob Evans on the bench.
Evans and Robert Tasin were up in the bullpen during the top of the inning, yet Sunny Golloway brought Kindle Ladd into the game instead after the Sooners made it 8-0.
“Even though they threw in the bullpen, it doesn't tax them,” Golloway said. “It's like getting a little bit of a workout.”
The Sooners will start Jake Fisher on the mound against Kansas State.
Fisher threw seven strong innings in a 7-3 win over the Wildcats to close Big 12 play last Sunday.
That was also the game where Golloway let freshman catcher Anthony Hermelyn start calling pitches.
Since then, the Sooners have allowed just three runs in 27 innings and have held opponents scoreless for 19 consecutive innings.
COWBOYS FROG NIGHTMARE CONTINUES
When Oklahoma State blew a 4-2 ninth inning lead Thursday night, losing 8-4, it was the Cowboys second-straight late collapse against the Horned Frogs.
Back in April, in the Sunday series finale, OSU misplayed a fly ball in center field that would have been the final out, but instead turned into a game-winning, three-run double in a 3-2 Frogs win in Fort Worth.
This time, Cowboys relievers Vince Wheeland and Brendan McCurry scuffled through the ninth, each giving up three runs as TCU sent 11 men to the plate.
“I was on base and Boomer (White) was on base,” said TCU third baseman Jantzen White, “and Boomer came over to me and said, ‘I think this is the guy (McCurry) they brought in on Sunday.'
“I didn't really want to talk about it, but we had a slight little chuckle, you know, ‘What if?' We were very confident. That's how things worked out. We definitely had some balls fall for us late.”
The ninth-inning disappointments against TCU aren't limited to this season for the Cowboys. Last year, catcher Jared Womack dropped a pop-up in front of the plate that would have ended the game, but instead led to a Frogs winning rally.
TADLOCK GETS HOT
Texas Tech coach Tim Tadlock, a former OU assistant, came out to argue with third-base umpire Randy Bruns after a fourth-inning obstruction call.
On Colt Bickerstaff's RBI single, Hector Lorenzana collided with Red Raiders shortstop Tim Proudfoot and fell to the dirt.
Lorenzana stood up and stopped trying to advance and Bruns awarded him third base.
Tadlock and Bruns had a heated conversation about the play but Tadlock stayed in the game and the Red Raiders got out of the inning without further damage.
OU FINALLY GETS OFFENSIVE
The Sooners' eight-run outburst was their biggest in nearly a month.
OU also scored eight in its 8-0 win over the Red Raiders on April 26 in the opener of their Big 12 series.
The Sooners hadn't scored more than that since beating New Orleans 14-3 on April 21.
The five-run ninth was also their best single inning since that game, when the Sooners scored seven in the fourth.
BEARS WILL FIND MOTIVATION
Baylor coach Steve Smith said his players won't need motivation to come out and play hard in their final game of the Big 12 Tournament tomorrow, despite an 0-2 record in pool play, no chance of advancing to Sunday's title game and abandoned hope of making the postseason.
When asked how the team will come out in its last game of the season, he responded by saying he doesn't know if it'll be the team's last game, but he did know it'll play hard as usual.
“After you lose the first game here, you're really not playing for (the championship) in this format,” Smith said. “That's the downside of the format, because you lose control over your destiny.”
Smith Saturday's game against Texas Tech will have meaning for one group: his seniors.
“Tomorrow, Cal Towey will have a lot to play for, Nathan Orf will have a lot to play for, (Steve) Dalporto will have a lot to play for. I don't think our guys have to look for reasons to play; that's not who they are. You know, if they'll go to class and punch out a 3.3 GPA, they'll come to play.”
KSU'S FISHER WON'T PLAY
Kansas State sophomore shortstop Austin Fisher (back) won't play Saturday against Oklahoma, coach Brad Hill said following his team's 13-9 win Friday over Baylor.
Fisher hasn't played since Kansas State's 6-5 win over Oklahoma on May 17.
Fisher is hitting .356 this season, and was a first-team All-Big 12 selection.
Freshman Lance Miles has started in Fisher's place, and was 2 for 5 with three RBIs on Friday.