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Notre Dame Baseball

Link Jarrett Notebook | Game One Loss to Florida State

May 7, 2021

Notre Dame baseball coach Link Jarrett spoke following the 5-2 loss to Florida State on Friday night. 

On the loss: 
"It was a really good game against strange conditions out there. That wind is something else. I don't know that it impacted the game, but it was just an interesting game. Anything to left field was completely knocked down. To hit a ball with anything on it like Cabell got that one and the wind was helping to the right field corner.

"It was a well-played game. You have to tip your hat to Messick and you can see why he has a two ERA. Early, we had a chance to crack that thing open and the guys that were in that situation have delivered so many times for us and we weren't able to really capitalize in the first three innings when we had him on the ropes. Really good command of multiple secondary pitches. Fastball has some life. He fills up the zone and we never could really mount a consistent string of at-bats against him. 

"(Jack) Anderson is different with the little slider is obviously good. We hit some balls well. The at-bats weren't as bad overall as you feel like they are based on leaving the runners out there early. 

"We strung some bad sequences on the mound together. Will (Mercer) was throwing as good as I've seen him throw. With two outs, I think he went walk, base hit, walk, base hit and from basically nobody on base to all of a sudden, he's given up two runs. You credit their guys. They found ways on there and they capitalized when they had a couple of those chances. 

"The same thing with the home run by Cabell. Tanner (Kohlhepp) was pitching really well. He hit somebody with a breaking ball and walked a guy and then bang the home run. That was really the ball game. 

"Well-played. Florida State is a very good team and very good on the mound. Tough at the plate. They beat us today." 

On if the team getting COVID shots on Wednesday had an impact today:
"I don't know. We had a handful of guys that weren't feeling good yesterday, but it seemed like they were better today. That vaccine affects people differently. I didn't have any issues with anybody today that felt like they were so out of it that they couldn't compete today. 

"Those are the things you have to do. We had to do it Wednesday. That was the timeline we had and that was the day it had to be done. I hope that wasn't in play. I don't think it was, but it affected some guys yesterday for sure." 

On LHP Will Mercer:
"He's got deceptive stuff. Those guys were pitch for pitch early on and Will was probably out-pitching him. We've got to get Will over that hump where he's got to be able to navigate some of the traffic. I think that's the maturation process for him that we're still seeing on the mound. He's got to be able to navigate some of the things that will come up when you have baserunners. 

"Maybe you give up a hit and walk a guy - we talked about it in our postgame. Regroup and find yourself again and be able to get back in there and really execute pitches. Early on, it was as good as I've seen him pitch. We just need to continue to get him to evolve and extend. 

"I'm proud of the way he threw other than three or four at-bats in a row that it got away from him. In a game of this caliber, that can be the difference and it was today." 

On the potential of bad weather on Sunday:
"We'll look at the weather. I haven't looked at it in four hours. I know it changed drastically throughout the course of the day. We'll make the best decision we can on whether we should play one or two games. 

"I did talk about the importance of Senior Day. In the COVID world, some of these kids with the draft being so short last year and some of these transfers that we ended up attracting that have had degrees from other schools and a graduate degree here - these kids have been through a lot. To make it to this point in a college baseball career, it's a special day. 

"I wanted them to reflect a little bit on where they are big picture-wise and how many kids may set out to get to this point in their careers - and not everyone makes it to that point for one reason or another. 

"Tomorrow is an important day. Before the game is very important to me and to the families of the kids that have graduated and some of them have multiple degrees. We'll shake off the game today, but tomorrow is a whole different feel and it's special for those older guys." 

On confidence in the team responding after tonight:
"Generally speaking, they're confident in what they're doing. They've played well. They're good players who have played a lot of really good, tough games. They've seen everything I think at this point in a season you can see. The caliber of the arm is all we see. The guys are all very good. 

"We've been down big and won. We've been up huge and North Carolina the other day rallied to make it one run when you're up 12-2. 

"We've seen everything. I think that's what makes them good. Our guys have played very sound defense. The plays today and some of the defensive stuff- the double plays - they're good defensively. They've settled into their positions. 

"We have enough pitching variety to be dangerous. Offensively, at times it can be good. We've just been solid. When you're solid in a lot of phases, you don't have any real magic trick to get ready to play the next game. You have to do what you do and do it with some conviction. Again, the at-bats early were probably the difference today." 

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