Story Poster
Jim Schlossnagle
Ryan Prager
Braden Montgomery
Texas A&M Baseball

Prager & No. 7 A&M make themselves at home in 4-0 shutout of ASU

March 1, 2024

Game #9: No. 7 Texas A&M 4, Arizona State 0
Records: Texas A&M (9-0), Arizona State (5-4)
WP: Ryan Prager (3-0)
LP: Thomas Burns (1-1)
Save: Evan Aschenbeck (2)
Box Score

ARLINGTON, Texas — Ryan Prager grew up a Texas Rangers fan.

The Dallas Hillcrest product's favorite player was Michael Young.

In his first start at the home of the reigning World Series champions, Prager did what Prager does.

“It was awesome. It was great,” Prager said postgame. “A bunch of emotions. Super excited and super grateful to be playing in a place like this.

“Growing up 25 minutes from here, it felt like home.”

In No. 7 Texas A&M's 4-0 victory over Arizona State on Friday night, the Aggie left-hander made himself at home on the Globe Life Field mound.

Making his third start of 2024, Prager continued his scoreless streak to begin the season, blanking the Sun Devils over five frames.

He struck out eight. He walked two. The only hit he allowed, a double, came in the fifth -- and Jace LaViolette nearly took it away.

Shockingly, that line score came without Prager having what he believes to be his “A” stuff.

“I took what I had and went with it and had to battle through a few things,” he said. “It comes down to just knowing what you have that day and taking it and just competing.”

He has now thrown 16.2 innings for the year and has yet to allow a run. He has punched out 23 and walked only four.

His first two outings came against McNeese and Wagner. This shutout performance came against a Sun Devil lineup averaging nearly 10 runs per game entering play.

Yet, given the setting, this one certainly has more meaning for Prager and his family.

“I'm kind of at a loss of words for it, but it really just is a fantastic experience and one I'll remember for the rest of my life and hopefully get to do it again someday.”
A&M pitcher Ryan Prager

“I'm kind of at a loss of words for it, but it really just is a fantastic experience and one I'll remember for the rest of my life and hopefully get to do it again someday,” Prager said.

More of the same from an A&M starter was accompanied by more early run support.

In each of his starts, Prager has received first-inning offense.

“It's special being able to play in here. Coming into it, obviously, everybody wants to hit a bomb on the big-boy field,” Braden Montgomery said. “That was something I wanted to do. Glad I got it out of the way in the first at-bat. Who knows, maybe we'll have more coming.”

Montgomery's three-run line-drive homer to left jumpstarted the Aggies in the first.

In the fourth, true freshman Caden Sorrell got his first collegiate blast — a solo job. The Highland Village native also laid out for a diving catch two innings earlier.

“This is a great thing for him and his family, a Dallas-Fort Worth guy to get his first college home run in the Rangers' stadium? Come on,” said A&M head coach Jim Schlossnagle. “It was pretty awesome.

“He has been doing great. He's a good player, and this is a tough team to play on, especially as a freshman.”

The round-trippers accounted for two of A&M's four hits.

Arizona State starter Thomas Burns did not take kindly to Montgomery's bomb and responded by plunking the All-American with fastballs on each of his next two plate appearances in the second and fourth innings.

The second beam ball — a 92.7 mph heater that hit Montgomery in the back — saw a fiery Schlossnagle emerge from the first-base dugout to argue with home plate umpire Chris Coskey.

“Do I really think in the depths of my soul that was intentional? I mean, probably not, but somebody has to stand up for the player,” Schlossnagle said. “I don't want our players charging the mound. If somebody's going to get thrown out of the game, it's going to be me, and it's my job to stand up for our players.”

Fortunately, nobody was ejected as warnings were issued to both dugouts.

Kelly Cothern, TexAgs
Braden Montgomery recorded his fourth home run and 13th, 14th and 15th RBIs of the year with his three-run blast in the first inning.

Yet, even with the perceived tighter zone, A&M’s pitching remained unaffected.

“It was all about going out and executing pitches, filling up the zone and giving our guys a chance,” Prager said. “You guys saw the game. It was what it was, and it means a lot to our guys. ... We'll play like that the rest of the weekend.”

Prager finished a scoreless fifth, and in relief, Evan Aschenbeck was his usual self.

The left-handed reliever retired 12 of 13 batters en route to his second four-inning save of 2024.

With the pair of lefties combining to hold ASU off the scoreboard, A&M has now recorded four shutouts in nine games.

The Aggies improved their already nation-leading ERA from 0.95 to a minuscule 0.86.

That's part of the reason A&M remains undefeated. Montgomery & Co. is another.

“I thought we did great. I thought we did really well,” Schlossnagle said. “It was a good ballgame. One swing of the bat was the difference in the game.”

The Aggies look to continue making themselves at home in Arlington on Saturday against Southern California in the Kubota College Baseball Series.

Discussion from...

Prager & No. 7 A&M make themselves at home in 4-0 shutout of ASU

5,014 Views | 2 Replies | Last: 1 mo ago by buffalo chip
The Marksman
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Embarrassing that Burns was allowed to continue to pitch in this game
buffalo chip
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My Dallas nephew (TT through and through) attended the game with his neighbors, the Prager family. A fun time for all!

My nephew did not respond to my text saying he is a GOOD AG.
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