OMAHA–What a fun chess game this has been between Mike Fox and Mike Batesole. After Fox smartly used Alex White to get out of that bases-loaded jam in the top of the seventh, Batesole employed his bullpen brilliantly in the bottom of the inning. After Dustin Ackley’s leadoff single and Kyle Shelton’s sacrifice bunt, Batesole summoned lefty Kris Tomlinson to face lefthanded-hitting Tim Fedroff, and Tomlinson did his job, freezing Fedroff on a 75 mph breaking ball over the inner half. That ignited the Fresno dugout, which greeted Tomlinson just a few steps from the first-base line after Batesole pulled him following the strikeout. I expected closer Brandon Burke to take over for Tomlinson, but Batesole called upon fellow righty Justin Miller, who got Tim Federowicz to chase a breaking ball off the plate for strike three, stranding Ackley at second base.
The two Fresno-UNC games have been perhaps the tightest, best-played games of the CWS. I have enjoyed both quite a bit.
It remains Fresno State 3, North Carolina 2 in the top of the eighth. Time is definitely running out for the Tar Heels, who will be up against Burke before too long.
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