ANN ARBOR, Mich. - In front of a sellout crowd of 2,814 at Michigan's Ray Fisher Stadium, the Michigan State baseball team dropped an 8-3 decision to No. 21 Michigan Friday night. Sophomore Chris Roberts and junior Kyle Day each went 2-for-3 with an RBI to lead the Spartans.
Leif Mahler finished 3-for-5 with two RBI for Michigan, while Adam Abraham went 2-for-3 with a solo home run.
With Michigan leading 6-1 in the bottom of the eighth, two walks and a hit batter loaded the bases with one out. After two more walks made it an 8-1 game, junior A.J. Dunn struck out Leif Mahler and senior Steve Gerstenberger made a nice grab at third base to end the inning and limit the damage.
MSU put a pair of runs on the board in the top of the eighth. Roberts tripled to drive in Gerstenberger to make it 8-2, and Day singled home Roberts to close Michigan State to within 8-3.
Michigan's Zach Putnam (4-0) scattered four hits and struck out five over seven innings for the win. Senior right-hander Mike Monterey (1-3) pitched five innings and took the loss.
Michigan took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third when Mahler doubled home pinch-runner Kenny Fellows. With the heart of the Michigan order due up, Monterey pitched out of the jam by getting Recknagel on a soft comebacker and Putnam went down swinging.
MSU (13-18, 4-8 Big Ten) would answer in the next half inning. With one out, Roberts and Day put together back-to-back singles. On Day's single to right, UM rightfielder Alan Oaks missed played the ball and it rolled to the fence. Roberts scored from first to tie the game at 1-1 and Day moved to third. Putnam put down the next two Spartan batters to strand Day.
Michigan (25-8, 12-1 Big Ten) took a 5-1 lead with four runs in the bottom of the fourth. Abraham led off the inning with his homer to right. Kenny Fellows and Jason Christian added RBI singles and Mahler delieverd an RBI double to right-center to highlight the big inning. Putnam tripled and scored on a sac fly in the bottom of the fifth to extend Michigan's lead to 6-1.
The same two teams will play a doubleheader Saturday at Kobs Field beginning at 1:05 p.m. The series finale is set for Sunday at 1 p.m. at Michigan.