Robichaux Tossed In Ten Inning Loss To Texas Tech
Tony Robichaux talks about not letting the game of baseball beat you. His Ragin' Cajuns ended up on the wrong side of that equation against Texas Tech.
Texas Tech took the Cajuns to ten innings, where they eventually claimed the 5-3 win in extras. Dylan Moore loaded up the bases in the ninth inning with no outs and a 3-2 lead, but it's hard not to look all the way back at the bottom of the fourth inning when considering how things played out.
Unfortunately for the Cajuns, the umpires are part of the game of baseball, and they played a big part in the drama on Saturday in Houston.
Follow along. With the game tied, 1-1, Brenn Conrad stood on third base. The umpire rung up the current batter, but it was only the second strike. In the confusion, the catcher wasn't paying attention and Conrad came home for what would have been the go-ahead run. Then, the umpires said they called time out and sent Conrad back to third. That sent Coach Robe over the edge.
Robichaux doesn't often get angry. It takes a lot to get him hot. His anger level got high enough to get his tossed from a huge non-conference game in a tournament setting. The umpires might claim they were right, but Robichaux wouldn't have went to those lengths if he thought the call was anywhere close to reasonable.
The reality is, that run would have made the difference in the game. Instead of going into extra innings, the Cajuns would have walked away with a 4-3 win at the end of the top of the ninth. Baseball can be a brutal sport at times.
Wyatt Marks battled for the first five innings (5.2 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 5 K), until Orlando Garcia's home run gave Texas Tech the 2-1 lead in the sixth. The Cajuns answered right back in the bottom of the inning to tie things back up, then they reclaimed the lead in the seventh inning off an error by the Red Raiders. Dylan Moore tried to shut the door for a two inning save, but he played with fire. Two costly errors from Hunter Kasuls in the ninth and Brad Antchak at shortstop spun the game out of reach, and it collapsed on them in the tenth.
It's a painful loss for several reasons, and it's hard to pick which wound hurts the worst.
The first cut comes in the RPI. The Shriner's Classic Tournament presented a big stage to earn some valuable wins out of the Sun Belt Conference, and the Cajuns came up short against Texas Tech and TCU. To make matters worse, it makes three straight losses and gives the Cajuns an 0-3 record on the road to start the season to counteract their three wins at home. This puts even more pressure on the Sunday finale against Rice.
How does this affect the psyche of a highly ranked team picked to win their conference by a mile? Can they handle a gut punch like this early in the season and respond with resilience?
When they met Robichaux in the locker room at Minute Maid Park, he probably already had the lesson to teach from the loss to Texas Tech. Unfortunately for him, he wasn't there to lead them all the way through what felt like a regional game.
Joe Robbins was a definite bright spot in the game. The versatile fielder is locking down his position at the top of the lineup, registering three hits, including a big home run in the sixth inning to respond to a run by Texas Tech. Brenn Conrad also collected two more hits, keeping him tied for the lead on the team with ten hits along with Kyle Clement.
It really was a quality baseball game, aside from the obvious botched call. I won't say the umpires blew the game, but some former Cajuns can...