May 17, 2004
Arizona State southpaw Brett Bordes' sore shoulder and pitching inconsistencies have disappeared with a tweaking of his mechanics.
Working with coach Pat Murphy, Bordes has had three straight effective outings.
On Sunday, the Dobson High School alumnus allowed two runs (one earned) in five innings as the Sun Devils completed a sweep of Oregon State, 8-4, before 2,354 fans at Packard Stadium.
"He did a nice job," Murphy said. "He's made nice adjustments the last three outings."
Those adjustments were pitching more from the stretch, shortening his stride, and getting the proper extension on his delivery. Murphy has been working with Bordes in the bullpen daily since taking over pitching-coach duties from assistant Chris Sinacori, who's on leave.
“After that it's been a lot better,” said Bordes (3-0), who struck out four and walked two. “Since I fixed my mechanics, (my shoulder) feels great now.”
In his last three outings, Bordes has allowed six hits and three runs (two earned) over 9 innings.
Bordes was relieved in the sixth, Murphy said, because he was beginning to lose command of his pitches.
The 19th-ranked Sun Devils (35-13, 10-8 Pac-10) were in a 4-3 game in the seventh inning when they had their second four-run inning.
With one on and one out, freshman designated hitter Zechry Zinicola belted reliever Nathan Pendley's first pitch over the left-field wall for a 6-3 lead.
"I was looking (for something) inside and he hung a change-up. I got the barrel on it," said Zinicola, who started a four-run second with a leadoff double. "I was glad we could get enough of a cushion. It was awesome."
First baseman Chris Cook and shortstop Dustin Pedroia later had RBI singles in the inning.
It was a lost weekend for the Beavers (27-18, 7-11), who have lost six straight and face the daunting task of winning five of their final six Pac-10 games to finish at .500 in the league and remain viable for an invitation to the NCAA tournament.
“We got beat,” coach Pat Casey said. “We didn't do any of the things we needed to do this weekend.”
But for the Sun Devils, the stretch run to the postseason begins with their first Pac-10 sweep and a seven-game winning streak.
“We got a sweep,” Zinicola exclaimed.
ASU was 1-4 on Sunday in Pac-10 games.
EXTRA BASES: ASU begins a two-game series at New Mexico beginning Tuesday.. . . Assistant Jay Sferra went to Tucson to scout the Stanford-Arizona game Sunday night.