Stanford had already been reeling from two injuries suffered this past weekend. As The Bootleg has reported, shortstop Lonnie Kauppila is out for the season and will require surgery on his left knee. He ran into second baseman Kenny Diekroeger on a ball hit up the middle on Sunday, and tried to tough it out, but had to be substituted for in his next at bat.
In that game, Brett Michael Doran replaced Kauppila in an 0-2 count and deposited a single into left field for his first hit of the season to give Stanford a 2-0 lead. Defensivvely, Kenny Diekroeger moved back to shortstop for the Cardinal. That’s the position that the junior had manned for the better part of his first two seasons on the Farm.
Stewart, McArdle also hurt
Blandino was actually at third base Tuesday night because another Cardinal injury forced Stephen Piscotty, the usual man at that post, to play left field. Stanford center fielder Jake Stewart tweaked his knee Friday night when he accidentally stepped on a loose baseball at the bottom of the dugout steps in between innings. The junior’s absence forced has forced regular left fielder Tyler Gaffney to move over to his position in center field for the time being. We are hearing Stewart is probable, and should be ready to go for this weekend’s monumental series against Arizona State.
The injury woes continued Tuesday when relief pitcher Dean McArdle was nailed in the hand by a comebacker off the bat of San Jose State’s Nick Schulz in the sixth inning. McArdle immediately sprinted toward the Cardinal dugout sporting a grimace, and he was replaced by Sahil Bloom.
Will the Sun Devils help Stanford catch fire?
Tuesday’s midweek game, meanwhile saw more offensive struggles for Stanford. The Cardinal mustered only five hits throughout the contest, and they were defeated for the first time this season in a midweek game. The sole scoring came off a two-run Blandino blast in the third inning.
Stanford’s bullpen was solid behind starter John Hochstatter (4 IP, 2 R), but the Spartans plated the go-ahead run against Garrett Hughes and David Schmidt in the eighth inning to set up shop for their closer Zack Jones, whose 96 mile-per-hour velocity overwhelmed the Cardinal late.
Stanford, which has scored only eight runs in its past four games, now welcomes Arizona State to Sunken Diamond. The possible season-defining Pac-12 series begins this Friday (5:30 p.m. PT, kzsulive.stanford.edu, 90.1 FM). Mark Appel, coming off an epic 149-pitch performance against Oregon, is slated to start for the Cardinal against the Sun Devils’ Brady Rodgers, who is also one of the country’s best.
About the Author: David Lombardi is a Stanford and Pac-12 Conference enthusiast. He has broadcast the Cardinal on KZSU for several years and is currently contributing to the Cardinal Channel. You can check several of his Stanford calls out at www.davidmatthewlombardi.com, where you can also read his West Coast-oriented blog via this direct link. For Stanford baseball insights, follow David on Twitter at davidmlombardi.
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