May 21, 2010
BERKELEY - In a back-and-forth ballgame, the No. 25-ranked Cal baseball team fell to No. 10-ranked UCLA, 8-7, Friday (May 21) at Evans Diamond. The Golden Bears (27-20, 11-11), had taken a 7-5 lead in the bottom of the eighth inning on freshman designated hitter Devin Rodriguez's sacrifice fly and sophomore shortstop Marcus Semien's two-run homer, only to see the Bruins (39-11, 14-8) score three runs in the top of the ninth inning.
The losing pitcher for Cal was sophomore right-hander Matt Flemer (2-3), who threw the final 1.2 innings with four hits, three runs, two earned runs, one walk and one strikeout. The Bruins benefitted from some Bears' miscues in the top of the ninth inning. With two outs and runners on second and third base, Beau Amaral hit a chopper to Cal second baseman Brian Guinn that Guinn wasn't able to handle, allowing Chris Giovinazzo to score. Then Tyler Rahmatulla singled to right-center field and the ball was misplayed by Bear center fielder Chad Bunting, allowing both Niko Gallego and Amaral to score to give the Bruins an 8-7 lead. Earlier in the day Bunting had made two diving catches to record outs.
The winning pitcher for UCLA was reliever Dan Klein (5-0, 1.2 innings, three hits, two runs), who had yielded to go ahead runs for Cal in the bottom of the eighth inning when he gave up the two-run homer over the left field fence to Semien. UCLA had started the day's scoring with three runs off the Bears' starter Erik Johnson (7.0 innings, eight hits, three runs, two walks, two strikeouts) in the top of the second inning on Jeff Gelalich's two-run double to right field and Steve Rodriguez's RBI ground out. Cal answered with a run in the bottom of the second inning off Bruin starter Garrit Cole (7.1 innings, nine hits, five runs, two walks, seven strikeouts) on Devin Rodriguez's RBI double down the right field line.
Cal jumped ahead 4-3 with three runs in the fourth inning off Cole on Bunting's two-run triple to right field and Semien's RBI double down the left field line. But UCLA came back again with two runs in the top of the eighth inning, taking advantage of a Guinn throwing error trying to force a runner out at second base and left fielder Dwight Tanaka's bobble of Guinn's overthrow, plus pinch hitter Dan Espy's RBI single.
Down 5-4, the Bears mounted their eighth inning comeback behind Rodriguez's and Semien's heroics, only to seen the Bruins win the game with their three runs in the ninth.
Both teams finished with 12 hits. Bunting and Semien finished with three hits apiece, while Rodriguez and freshman third baseman Tony Renda each had two hits. Cal will next host UCLA in the second game of three-game Pac-10 series, Saturday, May 22, at 1 p.m. at Evans Diamond.
Cal: Semien, two-run homer in the eighth inning.