Miami hits eight home runs, takes series in blowout win over LIU, 22-5

During the five-run third inning, freshman Chris Diaz yells in celebration after teammate Jason Torres hits a home run during the 22-5 blowout against LIU. Photo credit: Charisma Jones

On Saturday night, Miami’s bats fell silent and struggled to get anything going against Long Island University’s (LIU) pitching staff. With a sour taste in their mouth from the disappointing loss, the Hurricanes’ offense exploded on Sunday afternoon, smashing eight home runs to power its way to a 22-5 win at Mark Light Field.

With the lead already at 16 and most of the starters getting pulled early, Lorenzo Carrier wanted to add some finishing touches to the offensive clinic Miami was putting on. In the seventh, Carrier belted UM’s second grand slam of the afternoon, pushing the run total to 21.

Carrier’s home run tied the program record for most home runs hit in a game, with eight. The last time Miami completed this feat was over 25 years ago, back in May of 1998.

Daniel Cuvet got the scoring going yet again for UM, lacing a double off the left field wall and scoring Edgardo Villegas to take an early 1-0 lead.

The young freshman is putting up video game numbers to begin his Miami career. Coming into this matinee matchup, Cuvet has totaled four home runs in his first 24 at-bats while flexing a .583 batting average and a 1.905 OPS. The third baseman added to those stats today, going 3-for-3 and sending his fifth home run of the year off the scoreboard in left field.

In discussing Cuvet’s hot start to the season, UM head coach J.D. Arteaga spoke highly of the freshman, both as a hitter and as a “student of the game.”

“He’s obviously very talented,” Arteaga said. “He sees the game through a different lens than a lot of people… He makes great adjustments pitch to pitch and at bat to at bat … He’s always learning and is always getting better, and that’s a recipe for a great, great player.”

Miami-Dade transfer Herick Hernandez toed the slab at the Light in a picture perfect afternoon.

in Coral Gables. The lefty had himself another solid outing, going six innings, striking out seven, allowing five hits and surrendering one unearned run. It wouldn’t be until the third inning of his second start of his UM career that Hernandez allowed his first hit of the season, a single up the middle.

“[Herrick’s] just throwing strikes,” Arteaga said. “He didn’t have a great feel for his curveball and slider today and was still able to pitch around that stuff … All in all did a great job, controlled the running game and battled.”

The third inning is where the UM home run parade began. Catcher Jack Scanlon started the festivities with the first of his two home runs, a solo shot over the right field wall. Cuvet and Torres followed Scanlon’s lead, going back-to-back with balls heading right for the scoreboard. Left fielder Gaby Gutierrez hit the finishing blow of the inning with a moonshot over the UM scoreboard.

LIU gave its best effort in trying to slow down the Miami bats, utilizing ten pitchers against UM. LIU starter Jared Hughes struggled to stop the relentless Miami offense. Hughes finished the afternoon by going less than three innings and surrendering six runs on seven hits.

From top to bottom, the entire Miami lineup synced up on the offensive side of the ball. After being held to just two runs on seven hits on Saturday, the starting lineup had at least one hit apiece through just five innings and finished the afternoon with a staggering 23 hits between 11 guys.

At the start of the fifth inning, eight of the nine UM batters had hits, with Miami captain Dorian Gonzalez Jr. being the odd man out, sitting on an 0-for-2 performance. With the bases loaded, Gonzalez decided to put the game to rest. The junior sent a long fly ball over the left field wall for his second grand slam of the season. The captain’s home run pushed the score out of reach, making it 15-1.

Miami looks to keep its hitting prowess going when the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles come into town on Wednesday, Feb. 28 at Mark Light Field. Ben Chestnut is likely to take the mound for the Hurricanes. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.