TCU baseball coach Jim Schlossnagle said “there’s nothing wrong” with reliever Trey Teakell, who did not pitch in the final week of the regular season.
Schlossnagle said he wanted to give Teakell, who finished with the second-most appearances on the team, a full week off ahead of the Big 12 tournament, which begins Wednesday in Tulsa.
“He definitely could have pitched today; he could have pitched yesterday. He’s fully healthy,” Schlossnagle said Saturday after a 4-2 victory against Oklahoma that closed out the regular season for the Horned Frogs. “We’ve been relying on him a lot. He’s really good on longer rest.”
Teakell is 1-1 with a 1.19 ERA and one save in 24 appearances as the primary setup man. He has struck out 35 in 37 2/3 innings and walked eight. He has a .221 batting average against, helping the Frogs to a 36-0 record when leading after six innings and 40-0 after seven.
Without him, TCU turned to Preston Guillory, Travis Evans, Drew Gooch and Brian Howard during the OU series. Guillory picked up the save Saturday, and Evans got the win in relief Thursday.
“Howard did a good job,” Schlossnagle said, noting his two-inning appearance Friday. “Wish he could have finished the game. He threw really well, and that’s good because we’re going to need all those guys in postseason play.”
Schlossnagle said Teakell will be available Wednesday for the conference tournament opener.
“He long-tossed, and he’ll throw a bullpen and be ready to go,” Schlossnagle said.
Riley Ferrell appeared twice in the Oklahoma series, saving the first two games.
“The more he pitches, the better he gets,” Schlossnagle said. “He’s pitched really well three times in a row.”
Freshman DH Connor Wanhanen got the final day of the regular season off so he could take a mental break.
The former Big 12 batting leader is hitless in his last 17 at-bats, and his average has dropped to .346 after it was over .400 in April. He remains second on the team in hits and third in RBIs.
“We’re asking a lot of him in the 3-hole,” Schlossnagle said. “Felt like you could start seeing it in his face, start pressing a little bit. Sometimes the best thing to do is just get away from it for a day and watch. He’ll be back in there Wednesday.”
Williams gets start
Junior college transfer Evan Williams of McKinney Boyd started in left field for the regular-season finale — taking advantage of an opening created by Wanhanen’s day off — and went 1 for 2 with a walk and an RBI.
“Just really impressed by how he’s handled himself, been a good pinch runner, defensive replacement,” Schlossnagle said. “He’s the kind of guy that can spark you down the stretch. He was more than deserving of playing time.”
Williams is 4 for 10 with a double, three walks and a stolen base in 14 games this season.
The Frogs finished the regular season with 100 steals, the sixth time in school history they have done that but the first since 1996.
Schlossnagle credited assistant coaches Bill Mosiello and Zach Etheredge for a “very, very well-coached” group of runners, led by Cody Jones (25 for 30) and Nolan Brown (17 for 20). Six other players have seven or more steals, and the Frogs are 100 for 133 as a team.
“Cody’s an elite speed guy and Nolan Brown’s pretty fast, but the rest of the guys, they’re just solid runners that pay attention,” Schlossnagle said. “They’re playing with some freedom. That’s something we worked on since Day 1 of fall practice.
“We always want that to be part of who we are, because that shows up at the park every day. If you’re a guy that can’t run, you really, really, really better be able to hit. Otherwise, you can’t play in our current system.”
TCU will meet Baylor in the first round of the Big 12 tournament on Wednesday. First pitch is set for 12:30 p.m. at ONEOK Field in Tulsa. TCU swept the regular-season series, opening conference with 3-1, 3-2 and 10-1 victories in Fort Worth.
The winner plays at 4 p.m. Thursday against the Texas Tech-Texas winner. The loser meets the Tech-Texas loser at 9 a.m. Thursday.
Carlos Mendez, 817-390-7407
Big 12 baseball tournament
Game 1: 4. Texas Tech vs. 5. Texas, 9 a.m.
Game 2: 1. TCU vs. 8. Baylor, 12:30 p.m.
Game 3: 3. Oklahoma vs. 6. Kansas St., 4 p.m.
Game 4: 2. Oklahoma St. vs. 7. West Virginia, 7:30 p.m.
Game 5: G1 loser vs. G2 loser, 9 a.m.
Game 6: G3 loser vs. G4 loser, 12:30 p.m.
Game 7: G1 winner vs. G2 winner, 4 p.m.
Game 8: G3 winner vs. G4 winner, 7:30 p.m.
Game 9: G5 winner vs. G7 loser, 3:15 p.m.
Game 10: G6 winner vs. G8 loser, 7 p.m.
Game 11: G7 winner vs. G9 winner, 9 a.m.
Game 12: G8 winner vs. G10 winner, 12:30 p.m.
Game 13*: G9 winner vs. G11 loser, 4 p.m.
Game 14*: G10 winner vs. G12 loser, 7:30 p.m.
Championship game: Noon
*If necessary. If Game 13 unnecessary, Game 14 will be at 4 p.m.