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Texas A&M Baseball

Schlossnagle & Co. gearing up for top-10 Blue Bell battle this weekend

April 11, 2024

Fightin' Texas Aggie skipper Jim Schlossnagle joined Thursday morning's edition of TexAgs Radio to look back on the walk-off win over UTSA on Tuesday night and preview an upcoming three-game set with Tim Corbin and the sixth-ranked Commodores.

Key notes from Jim Schlossnagle interview

  • It’s a beautiful day, and we have a great weekend of weather coming up. It should be a good weekend of baseball.
  • Tuesday night’s game says a lot about this team. We played horrible. How would you like to be judged on the worst 10 percent of your life or the worst 10 percent of your actions? We’ve all made mistakes, but I hope that’s only two percent of our season. We had a young pitcher who didn’t throw strikes and threw a pick-off away. Ali Camarillo, who everyone would want fielding a ground ball to send you to Omaha, made an error. It all compounded. There was some embarrassment in the dugout, but there was never a panic. We stayed in character. Brock Peery was great. Chris Cortez was awesome. We hung around with a good group of pitchers, and UTSA extended a lot of capital in that game. It was a good win.
  • The crowd should be awesome. I think it is officially a sell-out on Saturday. There is still some GA, lawn and Section 12 seating for Friday. All people need to do is call the ticket office. We’ll sell as many GA tickets as we can. We need our season ticket holders to show up or send your tickets to somebody. You can send them to me, and I’ll make sure people get them. We want to continue to pack this place, and it has been awesome all year. It should be awesome this weekend, but there are tickets still available.
  • Beyond the miss-played line drive and the triple, the other thing that happened with Caden Sorrell in that game was I was really close to pinch-hitting with Ryan Targac because their lefty was throwing a lot of fastballs. It would’ve been a good matchup for Targac, but I want to get Sorrell some left-handed at-bats. He smoked a ball at the second baseman, and it went 108 mph right into his glove for a 4-6-3 double play. The next time, he smoked a triple to tie the game. Sorrell is a really good player, and you can see him get better every single day.
  • Here’s what happened in the first inning: Everybody has a different vantage point in the game. Sometimes people in the upper deck have a better view than I do in the dugout. Nolan Cain lost the ball on the double off the wall. We all saw that Gavin Grahovac could have kept going. Cain lost the ball and then found it. Grahovac’s error was that Cain has multiple signs to tell a base runner what to do. Cain was telling him to find the ball. Had he found the relay throw and it kicked off the runner, he would’ve walked home. Grahovac’s mistake was that he stopped. On the fly ball, Grahovac decided on his own to stop. Braden Montgomery’s job is to look at both the coach and the runner. He was looking at Grahovac and saw he was going initially. You could say he needs to keep his eyes up a little longer, but he just kept going. What Grahovac had to do in that moment is that he needed to take off when he saw Montgomery hung up. You should have tried to create the fire drill in hopes that they dropped the ball.
  • When you watch the video, Montgomery wasn’t in a hurry. He took off and then looked to see if the throw was going to airmail. He knew there was going to be a play. If it had been a low throw or cut-off, he would’ve stopped. He saw an opportunity to take the base.
  • In the second inning, we had the bases loaded. The guy issued a four-pitch walk to Travis Chestnut. All four pitches were close. The Ball 5 chant was going, and that chant is never going to affect what we’re going to do. If they’re missing by a lot, we’ll keep taking. Grahovac looked at me as if he was taking. Heck no, buddy. He’s going to want to groove a fastball. Grahovac just missed it. We have parts of our offense where if the guy ahead of you makes an out on one pitch, it’s an automatic take. In that situation, I felt like he was again going to throw a fastball, this time to Jace LaViolette. I gave him the go-ahead. He threw a change-up. He hit the ball off the end of the bat to a part of the plate where there is typically nobody standing against LaViolette with how they shift against him, but because the bases were loaded, the third baseman was there. We made two outs on two pitches, which goes against our offensive philosophy, but that was the thought process.
  • Billy Liucci showed me Brauninger’s “Let’s Go Home” call on Jackson Appel’s walk-off home run, and I thought it was accurate. I wanted to go home too.
  • We don’t know if Troy Wansing is a viable option just yet. I’d like to see him throw some today before we decide if he’s on a roster or not. From a mental state, he has been through a lot. He had one doctor tell him that his career was over. We have a doctor in Fort Worth who will see our players, and he had a different prognosis on Wansing. In the bullpen, he has been 87-89 mph on the fastball with a good breaking ball. I was looking for a scenario where we could get him in and out quickly, and in that inning, it was back-to-back lefties to start an inning early in the game. I knew if it was late with the game on the line I wouldn’t use him. Wansing felt good yesterday, but we’ll have to spoon-feed it until we get him back to being more effective and throwing more strikes.
  • We had seven guys throw in a sim game yesterday, and I had Chestnut and Targac lead off every inning to get maximum at-bats and to let us evaluate them. I’m not just picking a second baseman out of a hat, although that may work better. Who knows. We look for the matchup and play the hot hand. Is the guy we’re playing a strike thrower? Targac can change the game with one swing. I gave Kaeden Kent a start last weekend, and he has had three good at-bats in a row. He’s going through an injury that’s nothing serious, and he wasn’t available on Tuesday. Jack Bell isn’t lost on this thing either, and he had a good day yesterday as well. If this is our biggest concern, that’s not a bad thing.
  • Vanderbilt runs the bases like crazy. They’ll bunt on you. One of their best power hitters is hidden in the nine spot. With Vanderbilt, because of their academic situation, they can’t get a bunch of transfers, so they have to have their young players grow. They have more power than they’re showing. It’s the pitching. They use five or six lefties, and they use them all the time. Carter Holton is electric. He’s a strike-thrower up to 95. We will have our hands full all weekend.
  • This next week, we won’t have to manage bodies unless someone is banged up. They’ll have Monday off. We have a 4 p.m. game on Tuesday, which is exciting. We’ll have General Mark A. Welsh III throwing out the first pitch vs. the Air Force Academy. That game should be over at a decent hour, and we’ll travel on Wednesday. Our guys are fine.
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Schlossnagle & Co. gearing up for top-10 Blue Bell battle this weekend

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