After an impressive start to the season, the Hoosiers find themselves looking in a whole new direction. It happens so quickly in baseball. Last week Indiana left Memphis feeling good about the start of the season under their new head coach. After their weekend in Knoxville, they find themselves looking in a completely different direction.
The Hoosiers find themselves with newly discovered flaws after they got swept against Tennessee to scores of 1-5, 0-11 and 3-5. After this series, we learned three more things from this IU squad: strikeouts can kill them, starters will need to improve, the defense still needs work.
Strikeouts could destroy this IU lineup.
The Hoosiers had a total of 46 strikeouts this past weekend and 21 alone in their 0-11 loss. Strikeouts obviously hurt any team, but when they are strung together one after another, it really takes a toll on this team trying to get their bats going.
Indiana needs another consistent starter.
Getting the ⚾️ ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/hkCMasPgYc
— Indiana Baseball ⚾️ (@IndianaBase) February 22, 2019
After the first weekend, the performance from Tanner Gordan was more than acceptable. In his first performance as a Hoosier, Gordan pitched only four innings, gave up one run and struck out six batters. His start on Saturday was almost the opposite of that as he pitched for four and one-third innings, gave up four earned runs, four walks, and three strikeouts. Indiana will need a much more consistent second-day starter if they look to have a successful season. Finding your Saturday starter is key as most top-level programs have at least solid Friday and Saturday starters.
The defense will need to improve.
Overall, the defense is something that is expected to get better throughout the year as they get more reps outside. In the three games this past weekend, Indiana had six errors. Those six errors led to five unearned runs and that will kill any team. When the team does not yet have consistent starters, they will need to keep runs off the board as much as possible.
The Hoosiers look to find some solutions in their next matchup on Tuesday. Indiana hosts the Cincinnati Bearcats for their home opener and first pitch is at 3 PM EST.
We're on to Cincinnati.
PARKING: Baseball fans will get free parking in Gate 11 only if they arrive by 6 p.m. on Tuesday.https://t.co/oBAqoGW7s2
— Indiana Baseball ⚾️ (@IndianaBase) February 26, 2019