CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas —Lefty Brandon Finnegan handcuffed BYU’s batters throughout seven innings Friday, leading TCU to a 10-0 victory at the Kleberg Bank Classic.
TCU (4-1) took a 3-0 lead over BYU (1-6) in the first inning and added four more runs in the sixth when Cougar starter Kolton Mahoney left the mound.
“He (Finnegan) is an excellent pitcher,” BYU coach Mike Littlewood said. “He is a potential first-rounder who throws between 92-96."
Finnegan, now 2-0, struck out nine Cougars in seven innings. The junior was a member of the 2013 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team and was drafted in the 45th round of the 2011 MLB draft by the Texas Rangers out of high school.
“We weren’t good all the way around,” Littlewood said. “We had some good at bats here and there, but they outplayed us in every aspect. They have a better offense now than last year. When we gave up three runs in the first inning, it seemed to let the air out of us.”
The Cougars got six hits off Finnegan, who had only given up three hits in his previous seven innings this season.
Three of those hits were consecutive two-out singles to load the bases in the seventh, but BYU stranded those runners. Out of BYU’s seven hits, all singles, second baseman Parker Starr had two hits.
Finnegan threw 86 pitches in those seven innings, compared to the 106 thrown by BYU’s Mahoney in five innings.
“Kolton didn’t have his best stuff, but he’ll settle in eventually,” Littlewood said.
The Cougars have their final game of the Classic on Saturday against Texas San Antonio at 2 p.m. CST.