Bob Holt is a reporter for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A graduate of the University of Missouri, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America, and voter for the Heisman Trophy, Biletnikoff Award and AP Top 25 basketball poll. Holt was awarded Arkansas Sportswriter of the Year in 2000 and 2015.
SEC Baseball Report:
Slugger unloads on A&M
Arkansas' Eric Fisher crosses home plate after hitting a solo home run in the second inning of the Razorbacks' game against Texas A&M on Tuesday at the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Ala.
HOOVER, Ala. — Arkansas first baseman Eric Fisher powered up again against Texas A&M.
Fisher hit a home run leading off the second inning Tuesday to get the Razorbacks started during a 4-0 victory over the Aggies in the SEC Tournament at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium. He hit a two-run home run when Arkansas beat Texas A&M 7-3 on May 9 in Fayetteville.
Fisher, who leads the Razorbacks with nine home runs, hit a 2-1 change-up from starter Daniel Mengden on Tuesday to put Arkansas ahead 1-0 with ace Trey Killian on the mound.
“Fisher didn’t miss it,” Aggies Coach Rob Childress said.
The home run went over the 340-foot sign in right field.
“To hit it out of this park, I guess you’ve got to hit it where I did,” Fisher said. “That thing just barely got over. When I was rounding first base I saw it, and I was pretty happy to get a run on the board for Trey. It definitely puts some fire in him and makes him pitch better.”
Alex Gosser is 2-0 as Arkansas’ starting catcher, with both victories against Texas A&M. He made his college debut when the Razorbacks beat the Aggies 3-2 in their regular-season series and caught again in Tuesday game.
Gosser, a freshman from North Little Rock, has started against the Aggies because senior Jake Wise first was sidelined by a concussion, then by a right hand injury. Gosser also caught the final seven innings of the Razorbacks’ 9-4 victory in 11 innings at Missouri last Saturday.
“I haven’t even noticed him, and that’s a good thing,” Arkansas Coach Dave Van Horn said. “He’s just catching the ball. I think he’s done a tremendous job.”
Gosser threw out Nick Banks attempting to steal and had an RBI single in the seventh inning to put the Razorbacks ahead 2-0 as part of a three-run rally.
“When he made his first start against us in Fayetteville he had a lot of pressure on him and I thought he was fantastic,” Aggies Coach Rob Childress said. “He did a great job again here today.”
Ready to go
Arkansas is without starting pitcher Jalen Beeks, who continues to rest a sore elbow, but the Razorbacks have some flexibility after using only Trey Killian and Zach Jackson on Tuesday.
“Obviously, it’s better than using three or four pitchers,” Arkansas Coach Dave Van Horn. “We’ve got some guys that are ready to go.”
Junior right-hander Chris Oliver (7-4, 2.63 earned average) will start today against Ole Miss.
“If Chris can go out and have a good outing, we’ve got some guys that have some experience that are ready to go out and pitch in this type of situation,” Van Horn said. “It will be a good experience for them.”
Oliver went seven innings when the Razorbacks won 11-1 at Ole Miss on May 4. He allowed 5 hits, 1 run and 3 walks with 5 strikeouts.
Sports on 05/21/2014