NORMAN — The Oklahoma dugout was a despondent place Sunday afternoon. A must-win game turned into 10-5 loss to Baylor.
Another Big 12 Conference series was lost. Another opportunity to corral late-season momentum. A season that looked promising in March, has crumbled.
Sunday’s game was the last at L. Dale Mitchell Park this season and chance to get a Big 12 series win for the first time since taking two of three from Kansas five weeks ago.
“I’m pretty heartbroken we couldn’t pull this one out for the seniors,” said OU center fielder Craig Aikin, who went 3 for 5 and was the only Sooner to have multiple hits on Sunday. “Those guys have been everywhere we want to go.”
The seniors who were honored on Sunday went to NCAA tournament Super Regionals the previous two seasons.
Currently, the Sooners (26-23, 6-12 Big 12) are alone in the eighth place in the Big 12 standings. Only Kansas State (23-25, 4-14) is keeping them out of the basement and still in possession of a Big 12 tournament spot.
There was no solace in that on Sunday. OU’s worsening plight has seen it drop 13 of its last 16 games. Lackluster starting pitching, poor defense and largely ineffective at-bats have contributed to the swoon.
All three were present on Sunday.
The Sooners knew they had to win a slugfest to get the series win. The wind was howling out to left-center field and the flags were pointing in that direction prior to batting practice.
Baylor (22-27, 7-13) swung the bats with that mentality. Adam Toth went 5 for 5 and drove in two runs. Porter went 2 for 4 with a three-run home run in the first inning and a two-run double in fourth inning. After that, OU’s bats went dead.
Baylor bashed out 16 hits and put up nine runs in the first five innings.