It was almost like a bad April Fools’ Day joke.

The Michigan baseball team worked out of trouble in the top of the first and then took a 2-0 lead over Indiana in the bottom half of the inning. For this tiny fraction of the game, Michigan displayed two of the elements it had been lacking all season: timely hitting and even some luck.

Then came the punch line.

In a half inning that lasted nearly half an hour, Indiana scored six runs in the top of the fourth to take a commanding 9-2 lead and never looked back from there. Unlike the first inning, the fourth contained some of the problems that have been plaguing the Wolverines all season: erratic pitching compounded by mistakes in the field and bad bounces.

Redshirt sophomore right-hander Tyler Mills didn’t make it through the inning. Despite not getting hit very hard, he gave up seven runs, only four earned, to get the loss. Sophomore right-hander Ben Ballantine was less than lights out coming out of the bullpen, but he ate 5.1 innings to keep the rest of the bullpen fresh for the remainder of the three-game series.

Seven different Hoosiers had RBIs, including 2010 Big Ten Player of the year junior left fielder Alex Dickerson, who went 3-for-4 on the day.

For Michigan, junior designated hitter Coley Crank is proving he may have finally broken out of his early-season slump. He went 3-for-4 with an RBI and three runs and is hitting .583 over the past four games.

The game opened official Big Ten competition for both teams.

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