In their last regular-season series, No. 9 Miami was able to pull out a series win against No. 14 Notre Dame by the count of two games to one. On Thursday and Saturday, the Hurricanes won, 6-4 and 16-7, respectively, and on Friday, they lost, 5-0. Here are some of the takeaways from the series.
Carson Palmquist dominated again, and he will be a game-changer in the postseason
On Thursday, sophomore starting pitcher Carson Palmquist, the Hurricanes’ ace pitcher, put on a very strong outing. In five innings pitched, he struck out eight batters and only gave up one hit, a home run from Notre Dame left fielder Ryan Cole.
The lefty became the first Hurricane pitcher since 2018 to have 100 strikeouts in a season.
“Anytime you get that many strikeouts, you’re in a special group,” Miami head coach Gino DiMare said. “We’ve had a number of great pitchers over the years, but he’s definitely one of a kind. I don’t recall anybody being quite like him.”
His teammates gave him all the praise as well.
“He’s crushing it,” sophomore third baseman Yohandy Morales said. “He’s been really aggressive going after hitters, not falling behind. He’s been pitching great for us all year. We can’t ask for anything more than that.”
With the hope of performances like Thursday’s, the Hurricanes can achieve great postseason success when Palmquist is on the mound.
Home run galore
This past weekend featured nine home runs in the two winning games by the Hurricanes. The ability of this team to turn on the “offensive destruction switch” has been impressive, especially in games that need a rally or lots of runs to get over the other teams’ huge tally.
In spectacular fashion, freshman outfielder Gaby Gutierrez had three of the nine home runs, with two of them on Thursday night, yielding five runs.
“I don’t really care about my stats, whatever helps the team win and puts us on top is what really matters,” Gutierrez said when asked about his home runs. “I’ve been struggling a bit, but I stuck to the same approach. I was trying to find something to drive in the air. He hung two breaking balls and I just put a barrel on it.”
Most of Miami’s other homers came in the first inning of Saturday’s game, in which the Hurricanes scored seven runs en route to a win.
On Friday, however, the Hurricanes put up zero runs on just five hits. For postseason success, the Hurricanes must be consistent on the offensive end.
Postseason baseball is here
Miami finishes the 2022 regular season with a record of 39-16 (20-10 Atlantic Coast Conference). As one of the best teams in the nation, it is very possible for the Hurricanes to compete for an ACC title as well as an NCAA championship.
First up is the ACC tournament, where the Hurricanes are the No. 3 seed and are in Pool C with sixth-seeded Wake Forest (15-14-1 ACC) and 10th-seeded North Carolina State (14-15 ACC).
The Canes first play NC State on Wednesday, May 25th at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, North Carolina. The first pitch will be at 7 p.m.