At a point when every game Auburn plays may help determine the Tigers' post-season fate, winning the midweek games is absolutely essentially. Midweek starter Andrew Mitchell has performed so well this season that he's gotten a promotion to the weekend, which left freshman Daniel Sprinkle to get the nod for this week's midweek contest against Georgia State.
Thankfully, Sprinkle was more than up to the task. Over the course of 6 innings pitched, Sprinkle allowed 2 hits, 2 walks, 2 earned runs, and recorded 8 strikeouts. Gabe Klobosits came on in relief for a single inning and recorded 3 strikeouts in the inning sandwiched around a series of hits and a run scored for the visiting Panthers. Freshman Casey Mize finished the game out with 4 strikeouts of his own to bring the total to 15 for the Tigers.
While pitching has been a bit of a struggle at times for Auburn, Andrew Mitchell being a redshirt Sophomore and Sprinkle and Mize both being true freshmen is a reason for optimism for the future. Mize was throwing some fastballs in the 95mph range at one point.
On the offensive side of the plate, Blake Logan picked up yet another RBI for his 10th in the last 5 games. Freshman catcher Jonathan Foster got in on the youth movement with 3 hits and 2 RBIs, himself.
The Panthers led for much of the game as they jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the 3rd inning. Auburn got one back in the 4th, and finally took the lead in a 3-run 5th inning. Georgia State added runs in the top of the 7th and 8th, but Auburn responded with 2 of their own in the bottom of the 7th and 1 in the bottom of the 8th to get the game to the final outcome of 7-4. The win was Daniel Sprinkle's first in his collegiate career. Casey Mize recorded the save, the first of his career and only the 3rd save of the season for the Tigers.
Auburn goes on the road this weekend for a Thursday-Saturday series in Columbia, Missouri. At 2-7 in Conference play, a series win is an absolute must against the Tigers, and really a sweep is almost a must, as well, if Auburn hopes to remain in play for a trip to Hoover and the SEC Tournament.