Eighth-ranked Clemson cruised to a 9-4 Atlantic Coast Conference win over Boston College Friday behind outstanding pitching from starter Brooks Crawford and reliever Ryan Miller, who kept the Eagles at bay offensively despite allowing 10 hits.
Tigers’ pitchers have been extremely efficient on the mound this season with a strikeout to walk ratio of 2.44. That trend continued on Friday as Crawford and Miller threw a combined 10 strikeouts without a walk.
In Crawford’s last start, last Sunday at Louisville he had some issues with command, giving up a pair of runs and walking four batters in a 4-3 win. Prior to that game he had issued just five walks in as many appearances, meaning the game had the potential to rattle Crawford.
However, Crawford bounced back well with five effective innings on the mound against Boston College (9-15, 4-7 ACC). He improved to 2-1 on the season with five innings of work, allowing six hits, two runs, no walks and striking out five.
Clemson head coach Monte Lee was impressed with the way the junior responded and set the tone for the evening.
“You could see in the first inning he had better stuff today, first three batters of the game saw first pitch strikes,” Lee said. “That’s the big difference, when Brooks gets strikes with the first pitch you are in trouble because he executes pitches.”
Crawford felt better on the mound despite coming off of a four-day rest due to inclement weather at Louisville and the Easter Holiday break.
“It’s tough to come back off four-days rest and my dad always jokes with me about how it’s like the big leagues,” Crawford said. “I had to change my routine, but got back into my routine today before I pitched and felt comfortable.”
Friday’s outing reminded Crawford of his performance in the Dallas Baptist series earlier in the year and he looks forward to a long rest before his next outing.
“The week’s rest will help because I felt my pitches slow down with fatigue as the game went on, having the rest will help me pitch maybe five or six innings.”
The Tigers look for their second ACC sweep Saturday in the final game with Boston College. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.