The NCAA Tournament has presented numerous players with the opportunity of a lifetime to shine and create their legacy. Unfortunately, not all players are stepping up in the face of adversity and playing at the level expected of them.
Some pitchers have disappointed.
Certain players entered the event with the hype of being one of the top pitchers in all of college baseball. Others came into this event with lesser expectations, but still failed to produce at the level expected of them.
One way or another, these pitchers have disappointed in a major way.
Blake McFadden, Kansas State Wildcats
Freshman pitcher Blake McFadden started 13 games, going 6-3 and helping the Wildcats win the 2013 Big 12 title. During the College World Series, however, McFadden had a collapse that we hope translates into motivation.
It certainly won't offer up reason for encouragement.
With the opportunity to help his team advance, McFadden recorded just two outs before being pulled from the game. In that time, he allowed four hits and faced six batters, which tells you that he had trouble.
Four runs of trouble.
The Wildcats went on to lose that game by a count of 12-4, ending what was easily McFadden's worst career start. Unfortunately, Kansas State also lost the next game and was thus eliminated from the NCAA Tournament.
McFadden has a bright future, but this was not his brightest day.
North Carolina Tar Heels
We could single out one pitcher, but that truly wouldn't be fair at this point. Not only has virtually the entire North Carolina Tar Heels pitching staff been unlike themselves, but they've failed to show up in numerous games.
For evidence, note that over the past five games, the Tar Heels are allowing an average of 7.2 runs per contest.
Their hitters may have struggled in their losses, but that doesn't excuse the pitching staff from failing to show up. In fact, if there's one area that North Carolina can look to when it comes to their lack of success, it would be their pitching staff.
To call that a stunning turn of events would be a drastic understatement.
UNC was the No. 1 team in the nation, and a primary reason for their success was their ability to out-pitch the opposition. They're 18th in team ERA and 26th in fielding percentage, which is a prominent factor in their being the favorites for the World Series crown.
Thus far, they've been worse than a shell of themselves.
Scott Sitz, Florida State Seminoles
Scott Sitz is one of the top pitchers in the nation, and truthfully, the Florida State Seminoles wouldn't have made it as far as they did without him. He finished the year at 10-2 in 16 appearances with an ERA of 2.09.
Unfortunately, Sitz was at his worst when the Seminoles needed him to dominate.
Facing elimination, Sitz took the mound against a powerful Indiana Hoosiers team. While many expected Indiana to break through offensively, no one expected them to dominate one of the best pitchers in the country.
Sitz went 4.1 innings, striking out five batters and allowing just one walk. Unfortunately, Sitz also allowed six hits, seven runs and six earned runs en route to an 11-6 loss, and thus, Florida State's elimination.
A disappointing ending to an extraordinary individual season.