A bunch of Miami Hurricane youngsters — and one former Gator-turned-Cane — made the University of Miami baseball team feel relevant again Friday night at Mark Light Field.
Hurricanes coach Jim Morris started an all-freshman infield for the first time in his 25 opening nights as the Miami skipper, and between that infield’s impressive play and the ball-smacking production of one-time Gator Danny Reyes, last year’s inability to qualify for the NCAA tournament seemed more distant by the second.
The Canes defeated Rutgers 7-1 on Morris’ first night of his final season after 41 years as a head coach.
Rutgers opened the scoring in the second on a two-out RBI-single by Luke Bowerbank. But the Hurricanes answered with three of their own.
Reyes, who transferred transferred from Broward College after his first season at UF, is the “best pure hitter’’ on the Hurricanes squad, according to Morris. He opened the second inning by crushing a double that caromed off the right-field fence. Michael Burns and Raymond Gil walked and Alex Toral was hit by a pitch, scoring Reyes.
Michael Amditis, who missed nearly the entire season last year with a broken ankle, reached on a fielder’s choice that brought home Burns. Freddy Zamora’s sacrifice fly drove home Gil for the 3-1 lead.
UM made it 5-1 in the second on a two-run blast to left-center by Reyes.
Left-handed senior Jeb Bargfeldt pitched five strong innings, allowing one run on six hits and one walk. He struck out five.
The freshman infield that impressed with some super defensive plays: third baseman Gil, shortstop Zamora, second baseman Willy Escala and first baseman Alex Toral.