March 25, 1998
Tigers Triumph Over The Citadel Behind Brian Adams Sophomore lefthander Brian Adams (4-0) won in his third consecutive start as Clemson blanked The Citadel 5-0 Mar. 25 at Tiger Field. Adams pitched 7.2 shutout innings, allowing only five hits and two walks while striking out six. Adams lowered his team best ERA to 1.62. Senior closer Scott Clackum wrapped up the game by finishing the eighth and ninth innings.
Right-fielder Matt Padgett added three hits and an RBI to lead the Tiger hitters. Over the Sunday game and The Citadel game, Padgett had a streak of seven straight at bats with a base-hit. Peter Nystrom added an RBI triple.
Clemson Opens ACC Play With Sweep Over Maryland Clemson opened its 1998 ACC schedule with a three-game sweep over Maryland at Tiger Field. The Tigers hit .405 for the weekend, while Tiger pitchers allowed the Terps to only hit .202 at the plate. Jason Harris was 8-for-12 with two homers and seven RBIs in the series.
In game one, Clemson scored three runs in the eighth inning to overcome a 3-2 deficit and to defeat Maryland 5-3 on Friday night, Mar. 20 at Tiger Field. The game was Clemson’s ACC opener. Patrick Boyd extented his hitting streak to eight games and Ryan Mottl (6-0) won his 10th consecutive decision dating back to last season. Senior Scott Clackum also picked up his third save on the season.
Game two saw Clemson break a national record as the Tigers defeated the Terrapins 19-6. Clemson’s 19-run third inning was the most in a third inning in college baseball history. The 19 runs set the Clemson record for runs in an inning and tied the ACC record regardless of inning. The double-digit inning was the fifth time Clemson has scored at least 11 runs in an inning in 1998. Mike Paradis (4-0) pitched six innings, allowing only two hits and one unearned run, while striking out eight to pick up the win. Kurt Bultmann led the Tigers at the plate with a two-run single and three-run homer in the third inning. Bultmann and Patrick Boyd also scored three times in the third frame.
In game three, Clemson scored seven runs in the fourth inning and never looked back on its way to a 15-6 win on Mar. 22. Skip Browning (5-0) took a no-hitter into the sixth inning. The sophomore from Fort Oglethorpe, GA allowed only one hit and three walks in six innings to pick up the win. Matt Padgett starred in the field with a Clemson season-high five hits. He also had three runs and four RBIs. With the win, Clemson improved its all-time record against Maryland at Tiger Field to 39-1.
Tigers Split Home-And-Home Series With Catamounts Clemson had its eight game winning streak snapped in a home-and-home series with Western Carolina on Mar. 17 and 19.
Brian Adams pitched 7.1 strong innings to lead Clemson over Western Carolina 5-1 on a chilly Tuesday night (Mar. 17) at Tiger Field. Adams won his second consecutive game, and also pitched seven or more innings and allowed only one run for the second straight game. The Bishopville, SC native allowed only five hits and one walk, while striking out six batters. Patrick Boyd hit his fifth home run in the first inning and ended with two hits and two RBIs. Jason Harris upped his RBI total with three RBIs on two doubles. Scott Clackum pitched the final 1.2 innings to earn his fifth save of the season.
In the second game (at Western Carolina) on Mar. 19, Clemson jumped out to an early 3-0 lead on Kurt Bultmann’s seventh home run and Peter Nystrom’s RBI double. But the Catamounts responded with five runs, all unearned, in the bottom of the second off starter Matt White (1-2). All five runs scored with two outs. Western Carolina upped its lead to 8-4 in the second, but Clemson chipped away and cut the Catamount lead to 8-7 on homers by Patrick Boyd and Matt Padgett. Boyd added an RBI double and three more RBIs in the game, giving him 17 RBIs in his last seven games. But Clemson could get no closer as reliever Erik Turnrose did not allow a hit in Clemson’s final four innings. The Catamounts added two insurance runs in the eighth to provide the final margin of 10-7. All five of Clemson’s hits went for extra bases.
Leggett Reaches 600-Win Mark Head Coach Jack Leggett is only in his 19th season as a head coach and has already reached the 600-win mark in his coaching career when Clemson defeated his alma mater Maine in the second game of a doubleheader on Mar. 14. He has a career record of 605-362 (.626) in five seasons at Vermont, nine at Western Carolina, and more than four seasons at Clemson.
Leggett has also amassed a 228-75 (.752) record while at Clemson, including each of the first three seasons that saw him win 50 or more games.
Odds And Ends * Freshman Justin Singleton has 14 RBIs, 12 runs, three homers, and two triples in only 32 at bats. * Patrick Boyd has 21 RBIs during his 11 game hitting streak. * 12 different players have homered this season. * Of Justin Hyde’s 13 hits, he has six doubles, a triple, and a homer. * First baseman Jason Harris has not committed error in 258 chances. * Only three times this season has a Tiger had four or more hits in a game, despite the team .356 batting average. * Scott Clackum has given up one or more runs only once in 12 appearances this season. * Clemson has outscored its opponents 60-8 in third innings of games. * Lefthander Brian Adams has allowed only two runs in the last 22.2 innings pitched.
Newcomers Provide Instant Offense The one question mark entering the 1998 season for Clemson was its ability to put runs on the board. That question has been answered emphatically thanks to many Tiger newcomers who have replaced the five graduating position starters from 1997. Clemson’s 10 newcomers in the field have combined to hit .380 (165-for-434). Those players have also stolen 18 bases in 19 attempts, and scored 140 of the 296 runs (47.3%).
Consistency A Key To Tigers’ Success Clemson is averaging 10.6 runs per game in 1998 and doing so without great individual game performances, but rather a group effort. Through 28 games, 14 players have at least nine hits, 11 players have scored at least 10 runs, and 13 players have at least eight RBIs. Ten of the 12 Tigers with at least 30 at bats are batting .351 or better. Also, only three times this season has a player had four or more hits in a game. On the mound, all 12 pitchers have under a 7.00 ERA and have at least four appearances.
Brian Adams Providing Strong Outings As Starter Entering the 1998 season, lefthanded sophomore pitcher Brian Adams had not started a game on the mound as a Tiger. But if his last three starts are any indication, Adams will see a lot more time opening games for Clemson. In his last three outings, Adams has pitched 22.0 innings, allowing only 12 hits, two runs, and five walks while picking up three wins. He has lowered his ERA to a team best 1.62 figure. Opponents are only hitting .193 against him, including lefthanded batters only hitting only .121. Adams has a twin brother on the Tiger pitching staff. Unlike Brian, Darren throws from the right side and red-shirted the 1997 season. Darren has pitched 4.0 innings in ’98 in four relief appearances.
Mottl Named ACC Player-Of-The-Week March 2 Sophomore pitcher Ryan Mottl earned Clemson’s first ACC Player-of-the-Week award in 1998 when he pitched seven innings and picked up his third win against UNC Wilmington on Feb. 27. The Florissant, MO native also won his seventh consecutive game dating back to the ’97 season. In the game against the Seahawks, he allowed just six hits and one walk, while striking out six. For the season, Mottl is 6-0 with a 3.74 ERA in seven starts. He won his last four decisions of ’97, therefore he has won 10 decisions in a row. Mottl also has 47 strikeouts against only 11 walks for a 4.3 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Mottl was a First-Team All-ACC starting pitcher as a freshman, and was the first freshman Tiger pitcher to ever accomplish that feat.
Boyd Garners ACC Honor March 9 Freshman Patrick Boyd was tabbed as the ACC Player-of-the-Week on March 9. He led Clemson to a 4-1 record for the week and hit .474 (9-for-19). The Palm Harbor native also was responsible for 14 runs in the five games, scoring nine runs and batting in five.
Boyd On 11-Game Hitting Streak After starting the season 3-for-25 (.120), freshman Patrick Boyd has risen his batting average to .364. He is also hitting 36-for-82 (.439) over the last 21 games. As the everyday centerfielder, Boyd has started all 28 games, and has scored an ACC best 39 runs, and hit seven home runs and five doubles. Boyd is currently riding an 11 game hitting streak. During the streak, he is 21-for-44 (.477) with four home runs, 21 runs scored, and 21 RBIs. He now has 34 RBIs on the season. Therefore, he leads the 1998 team in runs scored (39), walks (25), and sacrifice flies (5). Baseball America tabbed Boyd in the preseason as the ACC’s Newcomer-of-the-Year and as one of the top-10 prospects overall in the ACC regardless of class.
Padgett Quietly Making His Mark Junior Matt Padgett has steadily raised his batting average from his freshman season as he is hitting .426 in 1998. The Lexington, SC native has 43 hits in 101 at bats, and has six homers and 26 RBIs in 27 games. Padgett has also hit safely in 11 of the last 12 games. During the 12 games, he is hitting .500 (23-for-46), including 20 runs scored and 19 RBIs. He also had a streak against Maryland (3/22) and The Citadel (3/5) where he had a hit in seven consecutive at bats, just two short of the Clemson record. In the Maryland game on Mar. 22, he had a five hits in six at bats. The five hits was a team-high for the season. And in the last three games Padgett is also 10-for-13 with seven runs scored and six RBIs.
Starting Four A Perfect 19-0 Clemson’s four-man rotation of Ryan Mottl, Mike Paradis, Skip Browning, and Brian Adams has been on a roll this season. All four starters are also in their sophomore seasons. Mottl is 6-0, Paradis is 4-0, Browning is 5-0, and Adams is 4-0. The four have combined for a perfect 19-0 record in 23 starts. The four have also pitched 145.2 of the 250.0 innings and have a combined 3.52 ERA.
Big Innings Clemson has scored at least 11 runs in an inning an amazing five times already in 1998. The Tigers scored 12 runs in the third inning against UNC Wilmington on Feb. 28 in the 19-6 win. Clemson scored 11 runs in the fifth inning against Stetson on Mar. 6 in the 22-4 victory. Clemson then had double-digit scoring innings twice in the same day. In game one of a doubleheader against Maine on Mar. 14, Clemson scored 12 in the fifth inning en route to the 18-2 win. Then in game two, Clemson scored 14 runs in the sixth inning to overcome a 11-4 deficit to win 19-11. Clemson topped the 14-run inning with a Clemson record 19-run third inning against Maryland on Mar. 21. The run total was also the most runs in a third inning in NCAA history. In the fifth and sixth innings, Clemson has outscored its opponents 99-20 (47-10 in 5th and 52-10 in 6th). Also, in the third inning, Clemson has outscored the opponents by a 60-8 score. The offense has also been scoring runs at a record pace. The Tigers have scored 296 runs in 28 games, or 10.6 per game. The team record for runs in a season is 698 by the 1991 team. That team averaged 9.97 runs per game.
Freshman Nystrom An Instant Hit Peter Nystrom has made an instant impact on the Tiger offense as the starting left-fielder. The freshman from Dunedin, FL is hitting .378 with seven doubles, two triples, three home runs, and 27 RBIs in only 74 at bats. He has also walked 21 times and has an on base percentage of .529, which means he is reaching base over half the time he makes a trip to the plate. In the last three games, Nystrom is 4-for-7 (.571) with four runs and four RBIs. Nystrom has played in 27 of the 28 games, starting 24 in left-field.
Calitri Homers In First Career At Bat Red-shirt freshman Mike Calitri waited a whole year to do what few have ever done. The Canton, MA native hit an opposite field two-run homer in his first career at bat in the Tigers 16-4 win over East Carolina on Feb. 14. Calitri is 9-for-28 (.321) on the season, including two doubles, a triple, and nine RBIs at first and third base. Calitri had an outstanding game in the second game of a doubleheader against Maine on Mar. 14 when he had a double, triple, and four RBIs.
Roper Comes Back Strong After missing all but one game of the 1997 season, redshirt sophomore shortstop Doug Roper has started 1998 in fine fashion. The Vidalia, GA native has 30 hits in 85 at bats for a .353 batting average. Ironically, the slick-fielding shortstop bats in the ninth-spot in the lineup. He also has nine stolen bases, which is second on the team. Roper was a career 5-for-47 (.106) entering the ’98 season.
Harris Impressive As Tigers’ First Baseman Junior Jason Harris is hitting .427, which leads the ACC, and has seven homers in his first season wearing the orange and white. He also leads the squad with 36 RBIs and is second behind only Patrick Boyd with 38 runs scored as the Tigers’ new first baseman in 1998. The Brevard College transfer also has eight stolen bases in eight attempts. And he has not committed an error in 258 chances. Harris’ production is magnified by the fact that the left-handed hitter is hitting .408 against lefties. He recently had a 10 game hitting streak snapped, but still has a team-best 15 multi-hit games, and has a team- best 12 multi-RBI games. During the hitting streak, he hit .410 (16-for-39), including two homers, 16 RBIs, and 17 runs scored.
Bultmann Picks Up Where He Left Off Kurt Bultmann has started 1998 on a roll after setting the Clemson single-season record for doubles with 31. The junior from Seminole, FL hit two doubles in the three-game Olive Garden Classic. He also had six hits in 14 at bats and was named the tournament MVP. The second baseman has moved over from the shortstop position now that Doug Roper is back from a season-ending injury in 1997.
Bultmann is currently hitting .364 with nine doubles, a triple, eight home runs, and 33 RBIs in starting 27 of the 28 games at second base. His fielding percentage has also been a bright spot this season. He has committed only three errors in 108 chances for a .972 fielding percentage. Bultmann had one of his best games in his career against Stetson on Mar. 6, where he was 2-for-2 with two home runs, a two-run shot and a grand slam. Bultmann now has 50 career doubles, which puts him in 12th place all time in Clemson history. Below is a look at the Clemson career doubles leaders:
Rk. Name (Years) Doubles1. Gary Burnham (1994-97) 772. Bert Heffernan (1985-88) 633. Chuck Baldwin (1984-87) 624. Shane Monahan (1993-95) 605. Jim Crowley (1988-91) 576. Jim McCollom (1982-85) 567. Kevin Northrup (1989-92) 55 Billy McMillon (1991-93) 559. Brian Kowitz (1988-90) 5310. Mike Milchin (1987-89) 51 Robert Bonnette (1976-79) 5112. Kurt Bultmann (1996-present) 5013. Steve Baucom (1984-87) 49 Jeff Miller (1990-93) 4915. Matthew LeCroy (1995-97) 48
Leggett Has 41-7 Record in Februarys Under Head Coach Jack Leggett, Clemson has gotten off to some fast starts, mainly in the month of February. In his five February’s at Clemson, Leggett has amassed a 41-7 (.854) record in the month of February. Leggett was 8-2 in 1994, 6-1 in 1995, 7-2 in 1996, 9-1 in 1997, and 11-1 in 1998.
Tiger Field Rated Among Best In The Country Beautiful Tiger Field has helped Clemson gain one of the best home-field advantages in the country. The Tigers have won over 84 percent of its home ACC games and 82 percent of its overall home games, dating back to 1970. Baseball America recently published its rankings of the top baseball stadiums in the country based on aesthetics, playing conditions, and amenities. Tiger Field was ranked #8 in the country in Baseball America’s preseason issue, which is also tops in the ACC.
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