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Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Florida baseball embarrassed by Florida State 19-4

Florida State swept the Gators in a three-game series for the first time since 2000

Florida baseball head coach Kevin O'Sullivan takes a mound visit in the team's 12-2 loss to the Mississippi State Bulldogs Saturday, March 30, 2024.
Florida baseball head coach Kevin O'Sullivan takes a mound visit in the team's 12-2 loss to the Mississippi State Bulldogs Saturday, March 30, 2024.

Florida baseball’s season has been loaded with inconsistency. Coming off of getting swept by the Missouri Tigers, who had just one SEC win into their first game Friday, the Gators were looking for answers.

On Tuesday, they faced No. 10 Florida State looking to get back on track and hopefully something positive before another important SEC series. 

However, there were no solutions to be found. The Seminoles’ offense got on the Gators pitching staff early. They recorded a total of 19 hits, 14 of which came in the first three innings. They hit three home runs in the first three innings, and eight of FSU’s nine players had recorded a hit during that span. 

The early onslaught from the Florida State (27-5) offense led to a 19-4 win over the Gators (17-15), Tuesday night.  

It was UF’s third loss of the season to the Seminoles, who swept the three-game season series for the first time since 2000. To make it worse, Florida gave up 45 runs across those three games. 

Additionally, it was one of Florida’s worst losses to FSU dating back to 1975, when it was shut out 14-0. This loss may have been even worse. 

The Gators have thrown 10 freshman pitchers this season, the most in the SEC. Yet, veteran Ryan Slater started on the mound. And he had an early lead to work, as sophomore second baseman Cade Kurland and junior first baseman Jac Caglianone hit back-to-back home runs to lead off the game. 

But similar to the April 2 midweek game against Florida A&M, Slater had another rough outing. This time, he didn’t even record an out, giving up four hits and six runs of which five were earned. 

Fisher Jameson replaced Slater, and he gave up two earned runs and four hits. 

Then, the freshman pitchers entered. It wasn’t pretty. Between Alex Philpott, Robert Sutin and Grayson Smith, the trio surrendered 11 earned runs and 10 hits in four innings. 

The Seminoles hit five home runs throughout the contest, and every FSU player in its starting lineup recorded a hit. 

Even though the Gators recorded eight hits and walked just two, 17 runs given up in the first five innings led to their second mercy-rule loss of the season to the Seminoles. 

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Caglianone led the team offensively going 2-for-3 with his home run in the first inning. Kurland had two RBI, and Brody Donay, Taner Garrison, Michael Robertson, Ty Evans and Dale Thomas each had one hit. 

Next, the Gators will return home for the first time in four games and begin a three-game series with the South Carolina Gamecocks Friday. They’ll look to snap a four-game skid and first pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network Plus. 

Contact Bennett Solomon at bsolomon@alligator.org. Follow him on X @B_Soly11.

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