Torres' hitting streak makes grand first season impression
That he arrived at The University of Texas from the shadows of Hollywood, Calif., makes sense now.
Michael Torres transferred to UT from the University of Southern California and his initial performances for the Longhorns have been something straight out of a Tinsel Town movie script.
How else do you explain the 5-10 second baseman getting his name in Longhorns' record book before he even finished his first season at UT?
After all, when it comes to great college baseball tradition, Texas has a leading role.
Torres, who was the Player of the Year when he was a senior at Mater Dei High School in Los Angeles, is no stranger to grand performances on the diamond both in prep school and at USC.
Then, on March 11 in Reckling Park against Rice University, Torres began his UT story.
It continued home and away, and against 11 different schools.
It reached a crescendo on April 24 in UFCU Disch-Falk Field when Torres singled up the middle against Oklahoma State pitcher Robbie Weinhardt.
At that moment, Torres earned a spot in fabled UT baseball lore, as well as a place in the hearts of the Longhorns' faithful.
With the count at 2-and-2, Torres fouled off a pitch.
Moments later, he sent the ball up the middle, giving him the Texas consecutive-game hitting streak record.
It was the 25th straight game that Torres registered a hit and allowed him to surpass Rick Bradley, who hit safely in 24 consecutive games in 1974.
Torres set the mark on his dad's birthday.
Torres, however, said that it didn't really register with him until he thought he had a double earlier in what proved to be the record-breaking at bat. When he reached second, Torres saw the ball he had just hit went foul.
It was then, he said, "that I started thinking about the streak."
He took a deep breath and took the next pitch. He fouled off the following pitch before getting the record-breaking hit.
"It was nice to know that I set the record," Torres said following the game. "The standing ovation by the fans was a nice thing."
For Torres, it wasn't totally fulfilling because the Longhorns lost the game to OSU.
The streak ended the next day in the series finale against the Cowboys when Torres was 0-for-3 with a walk and a sacrifice fly.
During the 25 consecutive-game streak, Torres hit .419 (41-of-101) with 22 runs scored. He also hit three doubles, three home runs and registered 22 RBI.
"It was a good accomplishment," he said.