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Desert Dispatches: Minnesota’s Meyer Shines, Beavers Impress

At The Ballpark

PHOENIX — Beneath the flop of fiery red hair, Max Meyer’s brain was firing with an explosiveness that even surpasses the bombastic nature of his right arm.

The Minnesota righthander’s adrenaline was gushing as he attacked a fourth-inning situation with runners in scoring position and the heart of the Oregon lineup due up.

Donated a 9-0 lead by his offense, Meyer hit a batter and walked two to load the bases with one out. He eventually sandwiched an RBI single with a pair of strikeouts to minimize damage. Meyer, who was a third-team All-American closer as a freshman, brings the closer’s mentality to Friday nights, which Gophers head coach John Anderson admires and is trying to amend. Meyer collected the two strikeouts, but perhaps more detrimental to Minnesota’s efforts was him having to throw more than 30 pitches in the frame.

“He could have done a better job of pitching to contact and being able to extend them in the game longer since he’s on a pitch count first time out,” Anderson said after Minnesota escaped a bases-loaded jam in the ninth inning to hold on for a 12-10 win. “I just think there’s times when he could have done a better job of getting [outs] from soft contact, rather than getting deep in counts and trying to strike everybody out. I think he gets into that mindset a little bit.”

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