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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

A&M’s historic season ends in Omaha

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Photo by Robert O’Brien

Junior RF Brett Minnich (23) sits by the dugout after the Aggies’ season was ended by the University of Oklahoma at Charles Schwab Field on June 22, 2022.

An unexpected season comes to a close in Omaha, Neb.
One year makes all the difference, and in Texas A&M baseball’s first season with coach Jim Schlossnagle at the helm, one year changed everything.
After missing the SEC tournament in 2021, the Aggies not only advanced to the NCAA tournament, but they also cruised through the regionals and super regionals without a loss. In the College World Series, they got their first win since 1993 and their first two-win appearance ever.
“Whether we win or lose the rest of this thing, this team is going to be remembered for a really long time,” Schlossnagle said after the Notre Dame game.
After the Wednesday, June 22 loss to the Oklahoma Sooners, Schlossnagle mentioned that, early in the season, the slow start for the Aggies was part of the team discovering its own identity. The turning point was when junior designated hitter Austin Bost offered to play second base during a stint of necessity. With injuries across the lineup, it opened the door for Schlossnagle and the Aggies. After a 10-6 start, A&M went 34-14 in its final 48 games.
All season, the Aggies exemplified a tendency for resiliency. With a 17-1 record after losses and numerous come-from-behind victories, the Aggies had a flair for being the comeback kings, both in games and during the season as a whole.
Slow starts for the Aggies held the team back during the College World Series, yet A&M got away with it against both Texas and Notre Dame. But against Oklahoma, it bit them both times, knocking A&M out of the tournament.
On par for the course, the Aggies started their second postseason game against Oklahoma off slowly. They struck out five times in the first two innings and left runners on the corners at the end of the second inning. The Sooners, on the other hand, got off to another hot start.
In the first inning, Oklahoma applied quick pressure to the bases. Sophomore shortstop Peyton Graham was walked, sophomore first baseman Blake Robertson singled to the middle and then sophomore catcher Jimmy Crooks sealed the deal with a three-run homer, much like the one he had in the two teams’ previous matchup.
Oklahoma put another run on the board in the third inning when Graham hit a double that plated a run. Robertson reached first on a fielding error in the following at-bat, and Graham capitalized with a scurry to home plate. They tacked on one more in the fifth from freshman right fielder John Spikerman. He led off with a single, stole second on a wild pitch and reached home off a single from senior centerfielder Tanner Tredaway.
The Aggies finally showed signs of life at the top of the sixth when senior left fielder Dylan Rock took the third pitch of the inning into the stands for a 377-foot solo homer, bringing the score to 5-1. However, the rest of the team failed to follow suit with any momentum.
Oklahoma’s starting pitcher, sophomore righty David Sandlin, left the game after seven innings, pitching 12 strikeouts and one walk while allowing just five hits and one earned run. They brought in closer Trevin Michael, a senior right-hander, to finish out the game, a 5-1 victory for Oklahoma.
A&M’s starting pitcher, graduate righty Jacob Palisch, although on the losing end, had a strong outing. He pitched a season-high 5.2 innings with 87 pitches and eight strikeouts in relief for freshman righty Ryan Prager.
“It was one of those days where I knew what was at stake and I wanted to give my all to those guys,” Palisch said. “I wanted to leave it all on the line for those guys. It didn’t matter how I felt.”
The Aggies will turn toward next year with all the confidence in the world after a big first season under their new coaching staff. As the team and Schlossnagle continue to grow, the journey ahead may lead right back to Omaha.
“Now, you’ll have a group of guys who have been there,” Schlossnagle said. “Now, instead of hearing [how important all the small things are] from a coach, now you’re going to hear it from players. The best way for younger guys on our team to honor the guys that were just up here is to work their tails off to get back here. We have a lot of work to do in recruiting. All in all, I think the Aggies are really proud today. The beauty of it too is that we’re also disappointed because we want to win championships.”
“[This team] will forever be remembered as the team that hopefully reignited Texas A&M baseball,” Schlossnagle said. “It’s hard to create a team with the synergy that this team has. It’s time to start back from ground zero.”

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