Jayhawks Fall to Baylor, 8-4
May 23, 2009
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. –
Sophomore Tony Thompson hit his record-breaking 19th home run of the season, his second grand slam in three weeks, but it wasn’t nearly enough. Shaver Hansen went 3-for-4 with a three-run homer to lead Baylor past Kansas, 8-4 in the final day of pool play at the Big 12 Baseball Championship at Bricktown Ballpark.
The Jayhawks complete the tournament at 0-3, and fall to 37-22 overall, while the Bears improve to 29-24 and 2-1 at the Big 12 Championship.
With Kansas trailing 6-0 in the third inning, Thompson came up with the bases loaded and one out and launched his 19th home run of the season deep over the wall in left field to cut the lead to 6-4. Thompson’s 19th round-tripper gives him the single-season record at Kansas, passing Travis Metcalf’s 18 homers in 2004.
Thompson finished the game 2-for-4, after singling to lead off the second inning, and extend his hitting streak to 16 games. His 16-game hitting streak is his longest of the season and is the third streak of 14-plus contests.
However, outside of Thompson’s heroics, KU’s highlights were few and far between. Baylor scored three runs in the bottom of the first on a wild pitch and a two-run double by Ben Booker. One inning later, the Bears extended the lead on Hansen’s 16th home run of the season.
KU brought the tying run to the plate with two outs in both the fifth and seventh innings, but could not catch the Bears. The Jayhawks’ best chance came in the seventh inning as a Buck Afenir single put runners on the corners with two outs for Thompson. However, Baylor’s Kendal Volz induced a long fly out off of Thompson’s bat to end the inning.
Kansas lost second baseman Robby Price to an injury in the bottom of the first forcing them to play without a designated hitter. The scheduled DH, James Stanfield, came into the game to replace Price, while the Jayhawks pinch hit for the pitcher’s spot in the batting order with four different players. Two of them – Brett Lisher and Jimmy Waters – collected base hits.
The Jayhawks will learn their NCAA Tournament fate Monday at 11:30 a.m., when the tournament selection show airs live on ESPN. KU will hold a press conference at 1 p.m. in the McCarthy Family Clubhouse.