The Arizona State University Sun Devils baseball team lost to the Clemson Tigers 6-3 in their opening game of the 2010 College World Series on Monday morning in Omaha.
The Sun Devils headed into the College World Series as the top overall seed after accomplishing a regular season record of 47-8 under first-year head coach Tim Esmay.
The Clemson Tigers all around dominated the favorite ASU Sun Devils. The whole team looked off, and no one showed the poise and skill that they had shown throughout the 2010 season.
What was so unique about this 6-3 loss to the Tigers? It was the fact that Clemson became the first school this season to beat Sun Devils' ace pitcher Seth Blair. The junior had come into Monday's game with a perfect 12-0 record.
To put it simply, it was just not Blair's day.
The Pac-10 Pitcher of the Year walked four of the first 12 batters he faced. Clemson racked in five runs, seven hits, and five walks (a season high) off of the star ASU pitcher. This was the second shortest start for Blair, who was pulled after 4 1/3 innings.
Pitching was not the only problem for ASU. The Sun Devils' defensive performance was lackluster—at best.
Overthrown balls and uncharacteristic errors riddled the Devils' chances of getting into a groove. Left fielder Drew Maggi lost a pop fly in the sun by about 20 yards, allowing a run for the Tigers and only adding to the disappointing mistakes made Monday morning.
This performance was not like the Sun Devils, who had a school record-setting 24-0 start to the season, and who proved to be the top competitor in the country.
The game, originally scheduled for Sunday afternoon, was delayed due to lightning and thunderstorms in the Omaha area.
On a lighter note, ASU infielder Riccio Torrez extended his hitting streak to 26 games with his RBI single in the sixth inning.
The loss to Clemson places ASU in the losers' bracket, in which they will fight to stay alive Tuesday against South Carolina, who lost Sunday to the Oklahoma Sooners.
Meanwhile, Clemson will take on Oklahoma following the ASU vs. South Carolina match-up on Tuesday.