For the first time in 10 years Mississippi State hosted a Regional in 2013. The scene was spectacular for four straight nights as Bulldog fans packed The Dude. Unfortunately the pesky Central Arkansas Bears were able scratch across a win on Sunday night to force a winner take all on Monday night. In that final game Chad Girodo began his march into Diamond Dawg lore with 6.2 dominant innings to advance State to a Super Regional.
Chad Girodo became something different during the playoff run. But, of course, he was also something different in 2013 than he was in each of the three years prior for MSU. Chad elevated his game to become a key lefty in the pen that Cohen could count on to get an out, or put together a quality inning after changing his arm slot in the off-season. Before this night, he had only pitched three innings once (at Kentucky) and that was exactly 3.0 innings. Against Central Arkansas he more than doubled that with 6.2 and notched his 7th win of the year.
Girodo was filthy that night. The slider was a devastating pitch for UCA. Each time it seemed he was about to get in trouble he’d get out of it. Then come out the next inning and only get stronger. He kept going and going until the night was through and the Bulldogs had advanced. In the end 12 Bear hitters had been retired by Girodo via strikeout and they were only able to put one run on the board….State winning the game 6-1.
This quickly gave Girodo his new role in the pen. One that would play a major role in State’s big run in the month of June.
- 4.2 innings vs. Virginia with TEN strikeouts (he would have had more but the rains came and Holder closes out the Super Regional the following day) and the win (8-1)
- 6.1 innings vs. Indiana with another 10 K’s and another win (9-1)
- 7.2 innings vs. UCLA giving up 0 runs and notching nine strikeouts – State didn’t win but he gave us a chance in a 3-1 game
Chad was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 9th round. Here’s an interview with him from last week…