Dare Devils: ASU Ready To Tangle In Texas

If we’ve learned one thing about the 2016 Arizona State baseball team it’s to expect the unexpected.

Left for dead in the Pac-12 pre-season poll Tracy Smith’s team navigated through a rough mid-season stretch to finish 34-21 and punch their ticket to the Sun Devils’ 39th NCAA postseason appearance.

Their reward is a trip to Texas as the second-seed in the Fort Worth regional hosted by top-seed TCU. The Devils open the double-elimination tournament Friday at noon against third-seeded Gonzaga.

“Anytime you’re playing post-season it still says you have a chance at a national championship,” Smith said. “Where we were a month and half, two months ago…to see what we’ve come through I’m extremely proud of this group at this point.”

Despite key injuries and lack of returning depth in the field and on the mound the Devils have rallied around their team-before-me attitude making a late run at the Pac-12 conference title before coming up short in the final weekend.

This weekend allows the opportunity once again to act as the hunter, instead of the hunted.

“It’s nothing to lose,” Sunrise Mountain High alum and junior ace Seth Martinez said. “Just play loose. Do it for ASU and ASU’s baseball program.”

If the approach isn’t broke, don’t try to fix it.

A Valley native, Eric has had a passion for the Arizona sports scene since an early age. He has covered some of the biggest events including Super Bowls, national championships and the NBA and MLB playoffs in his near 20 years in local media.