Hunter Parsons drafted by New York Mets in 19th round

The New York Mets selected Maryland starting right-hander Hunter Parsons in the 19th round (568th overall) of the MLB Draft on Wednesday. The junior is the first Terrapin taken in this year’s draft..

Parsons, who threw a pair of no-hitters before his Maryland career, was drafted in the 40th round by the Cleveland Indians out of Parkside High School (MD) in 2015. Four years later, the Fruitland native was worthy of a second selection after starting in 37 career games in college.

The right-hander showed signs of a bright future during his freshman campaign, holding hitters to a .201 batting average in 36 innings. He made 15 appearances, five of which were starts, and earned one Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors after a seven-inning, two-hit midweek start. He threw on big stages early in his career, pitching against the SEC’s Alabama and against Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament semifinal.

Parsons pitched for the Baltimore Redbirds the following summer in the Cal Ripken Baseball League, creating even more excitement for his development. He was named the league’s pitcher of the year, leading all pitchers in wins (6) and strikeouts (44). He finished the summer with a slim 1.40 ERA in 38.1 innings.

Pitcher Hunter Parsons on the mound. Photo by Amanda Broderick/Maryland Baseball Network

As a sophomore, though, Parsons’ trajectory took a negative turn, setting up what would eventually be an incredible comeback story. He stumbled throughout the year, yielding a 12.05 ERA in 21.2 innings while letting up 29 earned runs 41hits. Parsons was expected to be the primary midweek starter, but struggled with confidence.

After allowing eight runs in his first start of 2018 against Tennessee, Parsons was the most confident and consistent starting pitcher for the remainder of the season. He began the year as the Sunday stater, but eventually took advantage of opportunities to end the season pitching on Fridays. The righty threw two complete games, including a two-hit shutout against Stetson, which helped earn Big Ten co-Pitcher of the Week honors.

All it took was a new grip on his two-seam fastball and confidence for Parsons to turn into a pitcher that led all of Maryland’s primary starters in wins (5), innings (89), strikeouts (62) and batting average against (.225). The junior thrived under first-year Maryland pitching coach Corey Muscara, getting better as the season progressed.

Parsons continued his dominance on the mound his senior season as he became the Terps’ ace and threw a team-high 104.1 innings. The right-hander continued to lead Maryland’s main starters in wins (10), strikeouts (78) and batting average against (.232). Parsons’ 10 wins are the third most in team history, just behind former Terp Mike Shawaryn, who holds the second (11) and third (13) most wins for Maryland.


2019 Big Ten Tournament Preview


Maryland baseball swept Iowa last weekend at home and received the help it needed to qualify for the Big Ten tournament as the No. 6 seed — the Terps’ first trip to the postseason under second-year head coach Rob Vaughn.

It took inspired pitching performances from senior ace Hunter Parsons and junior Zach Thompson, a walk-off homer from shortstop A.J. Lee in the series opener and a clutch eighth-inning, game-winning hit in the finale from Chris Alleyne.

Maryland entered the last three games of conference play in 10th place in the standings, needing to finish in the top eight to extend its season. Not only did the Terps sweep their first conference series of the year, but they also won a Big Ten series at home for the first time. Because of tiebreakers, the sweep propelled Maryland to the No. 6 seed in the Big Ten tournament, which starts on Wednesday.

Lee, who went 10-for-17 in the final week of the regular season, earned Big Ten Player of the Week honors. The conference also announced its yearly awards on Tuesday, which recognized Maxwell Costes as the Big Ten Freshman of the Year and an All-Big Ten first team recipient. Randy Bednar was an All-Big Ten second team outfielder, while starting pitcher Hunter Parsons, third baseman Taylor Wright, Michael Pineiro and Lee were featured on the third team.

Costes and Pineiro were also named to the All-Big Ten Freshman team.

Now, the red-hot Terps (28-27, 12-12 Big Ten) will look to continue their momentum in the double-elimination tournament in Omaha. Here’s a breakdown of which teams stand in the way of Maryland and its first-ever Big Ten tournament title, and how the Terps fared against them during the regular season.

Let’s start with Maryland’s first opponent, the No. 3 seed Illinois Fighting Illini:

#3 Illinois (36-17, 15-9 Big Ten)

Maryland went on the road and took two of three from Illinois in April, a huge series win for the Terps against a team that has the 22nd-best RPI in the country and could potentially host a regional in the NCAA tournament.

Hunter Parsons tossed eight innings and only allowed two runs on six hits before closer John Murphy successfully recorded a save to secure a 4-2 win in the series opener. The Illini scored two runs in the second inning and wouldn’t score again.

The Maryland offense was held mostly stagnant by Illinois ace Andy Fisher, who took a shutout into the ninth inning. But the Terps scored four runs in their final trip to the plate to steal a game, using two sacrifice bunts to tie the game at two before a wild pitch plated two additional runs.

The Terps lost the second game of the series, 5-1, but won 8-4 in the Sunday game to leave Champaign with a series victory. More importantly, Maryland won the game with Parsons and Fisher battling it out on the mound. The two pitchers will face off again in the first game of the conference tournament.

#1 Indiana (36-19, 17-7 Big Ten)

The Hoosiers are the 2019 Big Ten regular season champions. Maryland won the series opener against Indiana, when Hunter Parsons tossed eight scoreless innings and only allowed two hits to a powerful lineup.

The final two days of the series, however, did not go quite well for the Terps. Indiana won 20-5 and 19-4, one of the worst two-day stretches in recent Maryland baseball history.

The Hoosiers showcased their home run ability throughout the weekend, and they finished the regular season with a Big Ten leading 90 home runs. Ohio State, which is second in the conference in home runs, only had 62.

Indiana is led by Big Ten pitcher of the year Andrew Saalfrank and first-year Hoosiers head coach Jeff Mercer, who won the conference’s coach of the year award. Indiana had two players on the All-Big Ten first team and three on the second team.

#2 Michigan (38-16, 16-7 Big Ten) 

Maryland hosted Michigan in the first weekend of May, and the Wolverines won all three games pretty easily, as the Terps’ pitching staff struggled all series.

Maryland’s pitchers conceded 10 runs in all three games of the series. The Friday game of the series was the only conference game the Terps lost when Hunter Parsons started on the mound.

Maryland hasn’t beaten Michigan since 2017, and the two teams would meet up if both won its respective first game of the tournament. Michigan leads the Big Ten with a .285 team batting average and a 3.40 pitching staff ERA.

Outfielder Jordan Brewer won the Big Ten Player of the Year after ranking first in batting average (.358), second in slugging percentage (.637), stolen bases (19), hits (69) and RBI (52), and third in runs scored (51) and doubles (18).

#4 Minnesota (26-25, 15-9 Big Ten)

The Golden Gophers return to the postseason as the reigning Big Ten tournament champions.

Maryland went on the road and took the series opener against Minnesota before dropping the final two games of the series. Randy Bednar and Michael Pineiro combined for five runs batted in during the lone win of the weekend.

After dropping the middle game of the series, Maryland had its opportunities to take the series on Sunday. But the Terps wouldn’t score until the ninth inning and were contained offensively with only four hits.

Catcher Eli Wilson represents the Golden Gophers on the All-Big Ten first team, while their ace Max Meyer earned a spot on the conference’s second team as a starting pitcher. Minnesota won the tournament last year as the top overall seed.

#5 Nebraska (28-20, 15-9 Big Ten)

Maryland and Nebraska did not meet during the 2019 regular season.

The Cornhuskers beat up on the weaker teams in the Big Ten play and didn’t have a signature conference series win until the final weekend of the regular season. Nebraska beat Michigan in the first two days of the series, outscoring the Wolverines 12-2.

Nebraska had a chance to sweep the series and earn a higher seed in the tournament but fell 10-8 on the final day of conference play.

Outfielder Aaron Palensky and designated hitter Cam Chick earned spots on the All-Big Ten second team as Nebraska’s representatives. Like Maryland, Nebraska did not qualify for the Big Ten tournament last season.

#7 Ohio State (31-24, 12-12 Big Ten)

Maryland lost two games of three against Ohio State at home earlier this season. The Terps arguably should have won that series but timely Buckeyes hitting stole a series away on the road.

Maryland won 14-8 in the first game of the series in an offensive explosion and, after jumping out to a 7-2 lead in the second game, it appeared the Terps would finally win a Big Ten series at home. But the Buckeyes did not quit.

Ohio State chipped away, then scored five runs in the final two innings to force extras, before hitting a game-winning solo homer in the top of the 11th off Maryland closer John Murphy. The Buckeyes went on the win the rubber match on Sunday.

The Buckeyes’ .273 team batting average ranks third in the conference. Outfielder Dominic Canzone earned All-Big Ten first team honors, Dillon Dingler and Brady Cherry were on the second team and starting pitcher Seth Lonsway was a third-team recipient.

#8 Iowa (30-22, 12-12 Big Ten)

Maryland’s biggest series of the season came last weekend against Iowa, when the Terps played their way into the Big Ten tournament by convincingly sweeping the Hawkeyes.

The Hawkeyes were on the fringe of receiving an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament several weeks ago, but their recent performances put them in desperate need of a conference tournament championship. Iowa lost its final five conference games of the season to fall to the last eligible spot in postseason play.

Reliever Grant Leonard earned All-Big Ten second team honors. Maryland, though, was a thorn in the side of Leonard throughout last weekend. Terps shortstop AJ Lee hit the first homer off Leonard all season for a walk-off win on Friday, then outfielder Chris Alleyne hit the game-winning knock off Leonard in the eighth on Sunday.

Leonard earned the loss in two of the three games against the Terps in the final weekend of the regular season.

Six Terrapins earn Big Ten yearly awards


After powering Maryland’s cleanup spot with 12 homers in the regular season, infielder Maxwell Costes was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year on Tuesday — one of six Terps to earn a yearly award from the conference.

Costes, also named to the All-Big Ten first team as a first baseman, is joined by All-Big Ten second team outfielder Randy Bednar, and All-Big Ten third team recipients in starting pitcher Hunter Parsons, third baseman Taylor Wright, shortstop AJ Lee and designated hitter Michael Pineiro.

Costes and Pineiro were also named to the All-Big Ten Freshman team.

Costes’ first year in College Park rivaled that of his older brother Marty, who the Houston Astros selected last year in the MLB Draft. Costes has been one of the most consistent hitters in the Terps lineup this season, blasting a team-high 12 home runs, a mark that also ranks fifth in the Big Ten.

The Baltimore native started in all 55 regular season games, picking up at least one hit in 37 of them. He collected four hits in the final weekend of the regular season against Iowa, which helped propel Maryland to a sweep and a Big Ten tournament berth.

Costes’ 44 runs batted in and .500 slugging percentage ranked in the top 10 in the conference, while his 19 hit by pitches led all Big Ten hitters. He becomes the second Terrapin to win Big Ten Freshman of the Year in the last three seasons, joining starting pitcher Tyler Blohm.

Senior ace Hunter Parsons has continued the recent trend of dominant Friday night starters for Maryland, going 9-3 with a 3.62 ERA. The Terps won in 10 of his 14 starts and only lost one time with Parsons on the mound during conference play.

The right-hander led the conference with 97 innings pitched, one of the more difficult pitchers to take out of a game. At 120 pitches in his final regular season start, Parsons stayed in the game against Iowa after a mound visit and struck out the final batter of the eighth inning on just three pitches.

Parsons’ best start of his senior season was against Indiana — the Big Ten regular season champions — when he shut out the Hoosiers on two hits over eight innings.

Bednar improved mightily in only his sophomore season, finishing the regular season with a .300 batting average and a team-high 52 RBIs, 47 runs, 69 hits, 29 walks, and a .543 slugging percentage.

The outfielder ranked in the top 10 in slugging, runs, hits, doubles, home runs, and runs batted in. His 19 doubles trailed only Wright, his teammate, for the conference lead. Bednar was one of three Terps to start in all 55 regular season games.

Wright, who transferred into the program last season, led the Big Ten with 20 doubles. In just two seasons, the Canadian already ranks fourth all-time in Maryland history for doubles. The infielder’s 12 steals and 29 walks were tied for the team lead.

Lee, a senior captain, was a key component of Maryland’s push into the postseason in 2019. He missed several games early in the season with an injury but was dominant after returning, and finished the regular season with a team-high .301 batting average.

The shortstop hit .588 in the final week of the season, earning Big Ten Player of the Week honors. Lee had arguably the biggest hit of the Maryland season so far, demolishing a walk-off homer in the series opener against Iowa. He hit three of his six home runs this year in the final four games of the regular season.

Pineiro, who didn’t play at all during his true freshman season in 2018, contributed in a much larger role this year. The outfielder played in 41 games, hitting .250 with three home runs and 23 runs batted in.

No. 6-seeded Maryland begins postseason play Wednesday at 10 a.m. ET against No. 3 Illinois in the Big Ten tournament.

Maryland drops rubber match vs. Ohio State, 5-1


Maryland right-hander Trevor LaBonte had only given up three homers in 40 innings entering Sunday’s start against Ohio State. Buckeyes center fielder Ridge Winand quickly changed that, hitting two in the first three innings to lead the Buckeyes to victory in a rubber match in College Park.

In his first two at-bats, Winand hit a solo shot and a three-run homer to give Ohio State a 4-0 lead in the top of the third inning. The senior, who went 0-for-7 in Saturday’s doubleheader, previously had only one long ball this season.

LaBonte, a freshman no stranger to series-clinching opportunities — pitching in his sixth in nine starts this season — made two costly mistakes in an overall successful outing.

Although LaBonte only allowed four runs over six innings and Ohio State only scored once more, Maryland’s offense only produced one run in a 5-1 loss to drop a fourth straight weekend series at home.

“We knew how good Ohio State is and it just tells you how much you have to finish games when you have a chance,” head coach Rob Vaughn said. “We had the chance yesterday to win the series and again, they battled back and showed a lot of toughness on their end.”

Maryland was six outs away from clinching a third consecutive conference series win on Saturday — a feat the program hadn’t accomplished since 2003. It led 8-4, hours after exploding for a season-high 20 hits to take the series opener in the first half of a doubleheader.

But the Buckeyes hit timely home runs to erase a late deficit to win the game in extras. Designated hitter Brent Todys hit a two-run homer at sparked a four-run comeback in the eighth. In the 11th inning, the sophomore went deep again to provide the game-winning hit.

Despite squandering a chance to take win the series before the weekend finale, Maryland was confident it’d erase the result from its mind with LaBonte on the mound. The Terps had won the previous two Sundays with him pitching, taking a pair of road series against Northwestern and Illinois.

But Maryland’s weekend struggles at home persisted, falling to 7-12 at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium this season. Unable to come from behind and erase Winand’s homers, the Terps dropped their fourth straight three-game series at home — the last successful weekend at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium coming in late February against Maine.

“Those two pitches are obviously the two I wish I could have back,” LaBonte said. “I was a little too middle with both of them. [Winand] put two good swings on them, so I paid for it.”

By the end of his start, though, LaBonte had settled into a groove and held the Buckeyes scoreless over his final three innings. Winand’s two homers accounted for the only run production off the Terps starter in six innings.

“I tried to put those two pitches behind me and just keep attacking guys and keep running off the plan that we had,” LaBonte said.

Right-hander Mark DuLuia allowed the only other Buckeyes run of the game in the top of the eighth, when right fielder Dominic Canzone doubled with two runners on. The sophomore pitched the final three innings and only allowed the one run, which was unearned.

That provided a chance to win for Maryland’s offense, which produced 23 runs in two games on Saturday. But it couldn’t replicate similar success against Buckeyes starter Griffan Smith, who tossed a complete game and struck out a career-high 10 hitters.

“I think that’s just baseball sometimes,” catcher Justin Vought said. “You’re going to be swinging the bat well like we did yesterday and bounced back today and [Smith] was throwing three pitches for strikes in the zone and we didn’t get that one big hit.”

Second baseman Benjamin Cowles hit a leadoff double in the bottom of the third and scored two batters later when shortstop AJ Lee bunted him home. But within reach for the entirety of the contest, the Terps left two runners on in the third and fourth innings.

Maryland went 0-for-8 with runners on base. Finishing with only four hits, the Terps only had two baserunners after the third inning — a double from Vought in the fourth a a walk from Vought in the sixth.

“As much as I would like to say we should’ve done more,” Vaughn said, “I have to tip my cap to how much [Smith] competed on the mound.”

Maryland loses to Ohio State, 10-9, in 11 innings

Maryland baseball held leads over Ohio State in the eighth and ninth innings, but both times, the Terps watched those advantages disappear before Buckeyes designated hitter Brent Todys hit a game-winning home run in the 11th inning for a 10-9 win.

The Terps led 8-4 entering the top of the eighth, but relievers Elliot Zollener and Andrew Vail combined to concede the game-tying runs on a two-run homer, a sacrifice fly and a double.

Third baseman Taylor Wright used an infield single to bring in the go-ahead run for Maryland in the bottom of the eighth, but an unearned run in the top of the ninth that scored on a two-out RBI single extended the game to extra innings.

After Maryland left the bases loaded in the 10th inning, Ohio State’s extra-inning homer stole the middle game of the weekend’s three-game set, forcing a series-deciding matchup on Sunday.

It had been nearly two months since Maryland last won a game when right-hander Zach Thompson started. The Terps entered the second-half of Saturday’s doubleheader against Ohio State an abysmal 1-9 in games that junior had started — the only victory coming on Feb. 22 against Maine.

While Thompson’s 5.29 ERA isn’t an every-weekend winning formula, his offense was only providing 3.8 runs per game in his starts — the fewest among Maryland’s three weekend starters.

Maryland’s bats gave Thompson five runs in the bottom of the second, enough to backup the starter’s seven-inning, four-run performance. Instead, the Buckeyes late-inning success squandered a win for the junior.

Two of the first three Ohio State hitters homered to start the game, including one on the second pitch of the game hit by right fielder Dominic Canzone.

Maryland immediately looked as if it would retaliate in the bottom half of the frame, using three consecutive walks to load the bases with no outs. But after a Buckeyes mound visit, starter Seth Lonsway struck out the heart of Maryland’s order to escape the jam.

In the following frame, Maryland nearly blew another prime opportunity to even the score. After back-to-back singles put two runners on with one out, right fielder Michael Pineiro was picked off first base for the second out of the inning.

But rather than wasting another chance with a runner in scoring position, the Terps scored five runs with two outs in the second inning. Shortstop AJ Lee Wright hit two straight doubles, plating three runs to take a 3-2 lead.

One batter later, first baseman Maxwell Costes smashed a two-run homer over the scoreboard in left-center field to cement the five-run frame. It marked Costes’ second homer of the doubleheader, which put him in the team-lead with eight home runs this season.

Lee continued his hot afternoon when Maryland loaded the bases again in the third inning, this time using a bloop single to extend the Terps lead to 6-2. A Lonsway wild pitch handed over another run to the home team.

Left-hander Andrew Magno pitched the final four innings for the Buckeyes, striking out 11 hitters to claim the win. He ran into trouble in the bottom of the 10th when Maryland loaded the bases with only one out.

Magno dug deep, striking out Maxwell Costes and Josh Maguire to add another frame to Saturday’s doubleheader. Right-handed closer John Murphy, who pitched a season-long three innings, conceded the game-winning homer to Todys on an 0-2 count with two outs in the top of the 11th.

The Terps went down in order in the bottom of the 11th, as the series became even heading into Sunday.



Season-high 20 hits powers Maryland to 14-8 win over Ohio State


Before Ohio State reliever Will Pfennig recorded an out in the bottom of the seventh, Maryland had scored five runs on five hits to turn a slim two-run lead into a comfortable advantage.

Shortstop AJ Lee, center fielder Randy Bednar and third baseman Taylor Wright — the Terps’ first three batters — all picked up their fourth hits of the game in the frame. First baseman Maxwell Costes smashed a three-run homer that marked Maryland’s 20th hit of the afternoon.

Even though Maryland starter Hunter Parsons conceded seven runs for the second consecutive weekend, another offense surge in a series opener powered the Terps past a sluggish pitching performance.

Left-handed reliever Sean Fisher held the the Buckeyes to one run over the final three frames, securing the save in a 14-8 Terps victory in the front-end of Saturday’s doubleheader. Maryland is now one win away this weekend from winning its third consecutive conference series.

When Parsons takes the mound every weekend, Maryland knows it’ll likely only need four runs to win the game. More often than not, that holds true. In seven of Parsons’ 10 starts this season, the senior has held opponents to three runs or fewer.

On Saturday, for the second consecutive weekend, that wasn’t the case.

One week after conceding seven earned runs over seven innings against Northwestern, Parsons allowed another seven runs against the Buckeyes in second straight uncharacteristic performance. But the Maryland offense picked up their ace, one who has essentially single-handedly won the team games over the last two seasons.

Lee, Bednar and Wright went 12-for 15 with a combined eight runs scored and six RBI. All but one Maryland hitter picked up at least one hit, and six of the nine recorded multi-hit games.

The Terps scored twice off wild pitches in the first inning against Ohio State starter Garrett Burhenn, a freshman who entered 5-1 with a 3.16 ERA. But the right-hander conceded a season-high eight earned runs and allowed a run in five of the six inning he pitched in.

After Ohio State tallied a run on a solo homer in the top of the second, Bednar drove in a run with a two-out double to make it 3-1 Maryland only two innings in. But the Buckeyes offense had the answer for Parsons and scored five runs off him in the top of the third to take a 6-3 advantage.

A two-out rally set up a two-run Bednar triple in the bottom of the fourth. Wright then bunt singled home Bednar to tie the game at six. Catcher Justin Vought and right fielder Michael Pineiro each picked up an RBI to reclaim an 8-6 lead through five.

Both teams exchanged a run in the sixth, the final frame for both starting pitchers. As relievers entered, the tides turned in Maryland’s favor for good. The Terps scored five runs off Pfennig in the five-run seventh, while the Buckeyes only scored once off Fisher and twice in the final six innings.

Series Preview: Ohio State Buckeyes


It’s been 16 years since Maryland baseball last won three consecutive conference series.

This weekend against Ohio State, the Terps can accomplish the feat for the second time this century. The last occurrence was in 2003 when Maryland won three straight series against former ACC foes Clemson, Duke and NC State.

That season ended at 20-33 after the Terps lost in a play-in game of the conference tournament as the No. 8 seed. But a series win against the Buckeyes this weekend would potentially help Maryland rise higher than the current fifth-place position in the conference standings with one month left in the regular season.

But the Buckeyes are hot, winning five of their last six games, including a convincing series win against Michigan last week. While Ohio State took down a perennial conference contender in the Wolverines, it was swept by a Northwestern team that Maryland just beat twice on the road.

Ohio State has played nine of its last 10 games at home in Bill Davis Stadium, but will visit a ballpark that Maryland has struggled in this season with a 6-10 record, and most recently, suffered a 14-1 beatdown at the hands of James Madison on Tuesday.

The Terps fell behind 7-0 through six inning on the road Wednesday against George Mason and eventually lost 9-5. Taylor Wright, AJ Lee and Michael Pineiro all recorded multi-hit games, but it was too little too late as Maryland has now dropped three straight midweek games.

Ohio State Buckeyes (21-17, 4-5 Big Ten)

Last season

The Buckeyes were eliminated in the Big Ten semifinals in 2018 before losing both of their NCAA tournament games against South Carolina and UNC-Wilmington. Ohio State was one of the four Big Ten representatives in the national tournament and headed to the tournament for the second time in the last three years.

This season

Ohio State is hovering just above the .500 mark after wining five of its last six games. A four and five-game losing streak stunted the Buckeyes momentum, but after a big series win against Michigan, they’re playing well headed into this weekend, despite sitting in 10th place of 13 teams in the Big Ten standings.

Hitters to watch

Only two Buckeyes have started in all 38 games this season, and they’re both the team’s best hitters. Junior outfielder Dominic Canzone ranks second in the Big Ten with a .368 batting average and leads the conference in hits and runs. Senior utility man Brady Cherry trails on Canzone in hits in the conference and is tied for fourth with 33 runs batted in.

Pitchers to watch

Junior left-hander Andrew Magno and freshman righty Bayden Root have combined for 31 appearances out of the bullpen this season. Magno leads the team with five saves, holding opponents to a .235 batting average while maintaining a 3.57 ERA. Root has struck out 37 hitters in only 25.1 innings while holding competition to a slim .217 batting average.

Probable Starting Pitching Matchup 

Friday, 6:30 p.m. ET

Sr. RHP Hunter Parsons ( 6-2, 2.95 ERA) v. Fr. RHP Garrett Burhenn (5-1, 3.16 ERA)

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Parsons finally had another subpar start after three incredible outings, yet Maryland still walked away with a win last weekend against Northwestern. The righty conceded seven runs over seven innings while striking out seven. The seven runs and hits he conceded were both the most he’s allowed all season.

The freshman has been dominant this season for the Buckeyes, but he’ll face a veteran counterpart in Hunter Parsons. Burhenn doesn’t hand out too many free passes; he’s walked just 19 hitters in 57 innings and has only hit two batters. He’s also only conceded two home runs thus far.

Probable Starting Pitching Matchup 

Saturday, 2:00 p.m. ET

Jr. RHP Zach Thompson (1-4, 5.29 ERA) v. R-Fr. LHP Seth Lonsway (5-3, 3.88 ERA)

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After conceding five runs last weekend against Northwestern, Thompson has now conceded more than three runs in each of his last three starts. Even when Thompson has fared well, Maryland hasn’t. The Terps have only won one of the nine games Thompson has started in, the last coming on Feb. 22 against Maine.

Also in his first season pitching for the Buckeyes, Lonsway has held opposing hitters to a slim .215 batting average in nine starts this season. He’s struck out 61 hitters in only 51 innings, but he’s also handed out 30 walks. He was the Big Ten pitcher of the week earlier this month.

Probable Starting Pitching Matchup 

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET

Fr. RHP Trevor LaBonte (1-3, 5.85 ERA) v. So. LHP Griffan Smith (3-2, 4.25 ERA)

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LaBonte got off to a very hot start to his college career, but has now given up 18 earned runs over his last three starts. He conceded eight runs on seven hits in five innings against Northwestern last weekend, but Maryland’s offense provided enough run support to hand LaBonte a no-decision.

Technically the “veteran” of the Buckeyes weekend rotation, Smith is the only one of the three with an ERA north of 4.00. He won’t pitch as deep into ballgames as Lonsway or Burhenn, and has allowed just over one hit per inning this season.  Last year, Smith made 23 of his appearances as a reliever.


Maxwell Costes wins 3rd Big Ten Freshman of the Week award

Maryland infielder Maxwell Costes picked up hits in all five games last week, including two home runs, helping earn his third Big Ten Freshman of the Week award of the season.

In the Terps’ 3-2 week, which included a midweek win over William & Mary a pair of victories against Northwestern, Costes drove in eight runs while scoring seven times. In addition to his two homers, he also hit three doubles last week.

The Baltimore native now leads the Terps with a .287 batting average, and among qualified hitters, he also leads the team with a .512 slugging percentage and a .419 on-base percentage. Costes is now on a seven-game hitting streak, the longest of his career.

Now up to six home runs this season, Costes is steadily chasing the nine homers his older brother Marty slugged as a freshman for the Terps back in 2016, a mark that led all freshman in the Big Ten.

Costes’ production at the plate over the weekend helped Maryland accomplish a feat that hadn’t happened in over a decade. After winning two of three against both Illinois and Northwestern on the road in back-to-back weekends, the Terps have now won a road series in consecutive weekends for the first time since 2006.

For a relatively young team, Maryland is now an impressive 11-7 on the road and only 6-9 at home in College Park. The pair of road series victories currently has the team in the in the top half of the Big Ten standings with five series remaining.

Maryland concedes 9 home runs in 20-5 beatdown vs. Indiana

Maryland starting pitcher Zach Thompson was already halfway between the mound and the third-base line, but home plate umpire Mike Cerra still hadn’t budged.

Thompson and the Terps didn’t get the punch-out they needed, one that would’ve ended the third inning with Maryland down four runs but still in striking distance. Instead, the inning continued to the dismay of the home crowd at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.

And, of course, baseball’s brutality reared its ugly head after Thompson retreated to deliver another pitch, as Indiana right fielder Grant Richardson smashed the team’s fourth homer in the first three innings.

The power surge never stopped. By the time the Indiana sealed an 20-5 beatdown — Maryland’s largest defeat in eight years  — they had hit nine long balls to set up a decisive rubber match on Sunday.

First baseman Matt Lloyd and designated hitter Scotty Bradley each mashed two home runs, while Richardson hit three.

Indiana’s offense stayed in Bloomington an extra night before finally making its way to College Park for the middle of the three-game set. On Friday, Maryland pitchers Hunter Parsons and John Murphy held the Hoosiers to only two hits in a 2-0 shutout victory.

The Hoosiers eclipsed their Friday hit total before Thompson recorded an out. Center fielder Matt Gorski doubled to leadoff the game, second baseman Drew Ashley followed with a single, and Lloyd homered for the first time of the game to give Indiana a 3-0 lead.

Center fielder Chris Alleyne led off the bottom half of the frame with his fourth homer of the season, putting the Terps on the board. Maryland didn’t score again off Indiana starter Tanner Gordon, who allowed three hits over seven innings.

Even with Thompson over 40 pitches after a four-run first inning for Indiana, the game didn’t seem unsalvageable yet. Only Murphy, Maryland’s closer, had pitched the night before thanks to Parsons’ eight scoreless innings. Head coach Rob Vaughn had his entire bullpen at his disposal if Thompson couldn’t recover and give his team distance.

It didn’t matter, though. Maryland trailed 6-1 after Thompson exited in the top of the fourth after allowing a leadoff single, but the bullpen was just as unsuccessful as its starter.

Freshman Daniel O’Connor and sophomore Billy Phillips each conceded five runs and only recorded two outs apiece. Sophomore Mark DiLuia tossed 3.2 innings, but he also allowed two solo homers. Freshman Kody Milton pitched the final frame, and he allowed a solo homer that pushed Indiana to 20 runs — the first time Maryland has conceded that many runs since 2010.

Indiana scored in each of the first five innings, pulling away in a seven-run fourth and a five-run fifth, and led by 17 midway through the contest. The Hoosiers’ 20 runs on 18 hits were both the most this season, as they improve to 4-1 in conference play.

The Terps scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth, but the game was decided five innings earlier. Maryland’s 20 conceded runs are the most since April 27, 2010 against George Mason and its 15-run loss is the largest since a 16-0 defeat on Feb. 20, 2011 at the hands of Texas.

Maryland silences Indiana, 2-0, to begin Big Ten play


By the time right-hander Hunter Parsons exited his start against Indiana last season, he had significantly increased Maryland’s chances of reaching the Big Ten tournament. It still wasn’t enough.

He slightly outperformed eventual fifth-round MLB draft selection Jonathan Stiever, leaving the Terps with a crucial one-run lead in the final series of the season. But he handed the ball off to a bullpen that faltered in a four-run eighth, triggering a three-game sweep that eliminated Maryland from postseason contention for the first time in five years.

This season, Maryland’s postseason hopes depend on a positive display throughout conference play, which started on Friday against the same Hoosiers. With the sour taste of last year still lingering, Parsons only allowed two hits over eight scoreless innings before leaving with a two-run lead.

Closer Johny Murphy avenged the three-run, go-ahead homer he allowed in that devastating series opener against Indiana one year ago, and preserved the 2-0 Maryland victory to open Big Ten play.

“Guys understood that our postseason hopes were taken away by them last year,” Parsons said. “So to be able to start our Big Ten play going against them was just a lot of energy coming out of the dugout … just wanting to get after it.”

Parsons retired the first 12 batters he faced, setting the tone for a pitchers’ duel against Indiana senior Pauly Milto, who defeated Maryland in the second game of that crushing final series a season ago.

The Terps defense helped Parsons stay locked in, energizing the crowd at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium, where Maryland had lost six straight games. It fell victim to sweeps against East Carolina and Creighton in consecutive weekends, and only scored two runs per game in that stretch.

But Maryland didn’t need many runs to take the series opener, especially after solid defense stopped Indiana’s best scoring opportunities. Right fielder Randy Bednar robbed a home run to begin the third and, one batter later, shortstop AJ Lee used his entire frame to leap and snag a line drive destined for the left-center gap.

“Early in the game I was scuffling and then Randy goes up and makes that play,” Parsons said. “It’s a reality check.”

The home team’s dugout erupted into cheers after both plays, as a dedicated fan waved a yellow flag with a bright red “M” into the sun-setting College Park sky. Parsons still hadn’t allowed a base runner before nightfall.

Parsons finally allowed a hit with one out in the fifth, and a leadoff double in the seventh was his only other blemish.

Early on, Milto was just as dominant as his counterpart, retiring all nine Terps one time through the order. But center fielder Chris Alleyne’s leadoff triple in the fourth disrupted the starter’s rhythm. Two batters later, third baseman Taylor Wright scored Alleyne on a well-executed safety squeeze to give Maryland a 1-0 edge.

“When we score first, we’re a really hard team to beat,” Alleyne said. “So that was the mindset … to safety [squeeze] to get the run in and that helped us out.”

Alleyne led off the sixth inning with a drag bunt that split Milto and second baseman Drew Ashley. Again, he came around to score, when Caleb Walls lifted a fly ball to left field with one out in the sixth.

Parsons issued a two-out walk in the top of the eighth with Maryland still leading 2-0, drawing head coach Vaughn out of the dugout to talk to his starter. At 112 pitches, Vaughn needed an honest answer from his veteran, and asked him if he had enough left in the tank for one more batter.

Parsons did, and used two more pitches to complete his eighth and final scoreless frame. Then, Murphy faced the heart of Indiana’s lineup in the ninth, working around a leadoff walk to earn his fifth save of the season.

And although Maryland is far away from knowing how this one result plays into its postseason fate this season, Parsons’ dominance reversed the struggles against the same Indiana team that abruptly ended its 2018 campaign.

“That was a heavyweight matchup. That’s what Friday nights are supposed to look like,” Vaughn said. “You’re going to get bruised and bloodied up a little bit, but Hunter didn’t blink.”