If there’s such a thing as a “quiet” .408 batting average, junior Chris Getz has it.
Michigan’s middle-infielder is flying a bit under the radar this season due to a lack of pop in his bat. Even though Getz has 42 hits on the season — second on the team — only three have gone for extra bases. And his RBI total, 14, is fifth on the team and underwhelming for a No. 3 hitter.
But Getz, a pre-season third team All-American selection by Baseball America, has relied on other methods to put runs on the board.
“I’m pretty much a speed guy,” Getz said. “Well, at least I think I’m a speed guy.”
Getz doesn’t need to think twice — he leads the Big Ten in stolen bases with 17, already surpassing last season’s total of 15. And his knack for stealing bases has frequently put him in scoring position — he boasts a team-high 28 runs.
The Grosse Pointe native was one of the few bright spots for the Wolverines this weekend against Iowa. Getz was 6-for-13 at the plate with four walks but was wreaking most of his havoc on the base paths. He nabbed four stolen bases, scoring on three of them. And with his nifty “pop-up” slides, Getz advanced to third twice due to errant throws.
“On the bases, I pretty much try to create hell out there for the other team,” Getz said. “Even if I make outs, I want them always thinking ‘He might go here.’ It puts a little more pressure on the pitcher. He might throw a ball (because of my presence on the bases). An infielder might force a throw or something or hurry up to much to make an error.”
Double Trouble: It’s a rare occurrence when one coach gets tossed from a collegiate baseball game, let alone two. But it’s unheard of for two coaches on the same team to be thrown out in the same inning.
Such was the case in game three against Iowa this weekend.
In the top of the second inning, Iowa coaches Nick Zumsande and Jack Dahm were ejected from the game.
The controversy began when Hawkeyes pitcher Austin Steward attempted a pick-off throw to nab junior A.J. Scheidt at first base. Steward was called for a balk and Scheidt advanced to second.
While Dahm was disputing the call with the first base umpire, Zumsande was barking at head umpire, Mike Wallace. Wallace gave him one warning and then pointed toward the right field foul pole.
“The umpires were saying that (Steward) was buckling his front knee,” Zumsande said. “But we got thrown out because (the umpires) didn’t really give us a straight answer as to why he was balking.”
Steward’s controversial pick-off move earned him another balk later in the inning when freshman Doug Pickens reached first on a single. Dahm stormed out of the dugout to argue with first base umpire Dave Buck, who listened for a couple minutes before tossing him out of the ball game.
Hit me Baby Four More Times: Junior Derek Feldkamp is making a case to be the most feared pitcher in the Big Ten Conference.
After beaning four Hawkeyes in Michigan’s 7-6 loss on Sunday, Feldkamp’s number of hit-batsmen shot up to eight on the season and seven in his last two appearances.
In his prior start against Minnesota, Feldkamp nailed three batters in a row, which led to a seven-run inning.
But the 6-foot-4 right-hander felt the circumstances yesterday were unlike last weekend’s.
“It wasn’t like I was all over the place like I was last weekend,” Feldkamp said. “The slider got away from me a few times, but it was mainly bad location on the couple of pitches. That was kind of just Murphy’s Law working against us. I just missed a spot here and there by a couple inches, and their guys just didn’t get out of the way.”