March 14, 2013
Matt Winkeljohn, Sting Daily –
Boston College comes calling this weekend at Russ Chandler Stadium, and the weather forecast is grand. Georgia Tech coach Danny Hall and Buck Farmer, tonight’s starter for the Yellow Jackets, have applied total recall while preparing in hopes that results match.
It’s pertinent as the No. 14 Jackets (14-2, 2-1 ACC) prepare to host B.C. (3-11, 0-3). When these teams met last season at B.C., the circumstances were eerily similar before it went haywire for the Jackets – a key wrong turn in a regular season that wound up like a trip taken with the wrong map.
The Jackets were 14-7 and ranked No. 14 nationally with Farmer sporting a 4-1 record, B.C. entered 7-12 and 0-6 in the ACC, and yet the Eagles rocked the Tech ace. The Jackets, in fact, lost the series two games to one, and the mess started Friday night when Farmer was touched for 14 hits and 11 earned runs in 4.1 innings.
Farmer has that game in mind.
“It’s more or less one of those things where I just want to go out there and redeem myself,” he said. “I’ll give credit to Boston College; they made me pay for mistake pitches that I made. I watched the video a couple nights ago. I made some decent pitches that got hit. Maybe it just wasn’t my day.”
Farmer’s first pitch was hit for a home run. It was the start of nightmare.
“I looked at it today [before practice Thursday], and took notes,” Hall said. “I’m still perplexed as to how Buck got hit because it was the only time all year that he just got hit. Everything he threw got hit so I’m concerned . . . was he tipping his pitches? Because we played a doubleheader the next day and they hardly scored.”
The teams split a Saturday doubleheader with B.C. winning the first game 4-3, and Tech taking the finale 2-1.
“The game we lost, we felt like we turned a double play to end that game, and we would have won but they called the guy safe at first base and the next guy gets a base hit and they beat us,” Hall said. “I remember it like it was yesterday.”
Hall hopes the Jackets are not simply assuming a better outcome this weekend against the Eagles, but rather that they’re of a mind to earn one. It’s not a common technique in the way he coaches, but he planned to bring up last year’s debacle with this year’s team.
“Absolutely. There will probably be a little message [Thursday] in practice because if you look at them on paper . . . it looks like Georgia Tech is going to win all three games,” he said. “I know it doesn’t work that way. I certainly hope that our mindset is that we need to try to go win three games, but it’s not going to be easy.
“I know for a fact that if we think we’re just going to show up and win that’s not going to happen. To me, it just shows you that you have to play good every weekend in our league or something like that can happen.”
“They may have known what was coming [last year],” he said. “Hopefully, this time around it’ll be different.”
Comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter @mwinkeljohn