Mississippi State hands top MLB prospect Jack Leiter 1st loss, evens series with Vanderbilt

Tyler Horka
Mississippi Clarion Ledger

The No. 1 prospect in the 2021 MLB Draft was on the mound in Nashville on Saturday night, but he was outdueled by Mississippi State's starter. 

Vanderbilt's Jack Leiter hadn't lost all season until Saturday. No. 4 Mississippi State handed him his first defeat in a 7-4 series-evening victory over the No. 2 Commodores. 

Leiter entered the game with a 7-0 record and a 0.98 ERA. He had only allowed six runs this season, but Mississippi State roughed him up for four runs in five innings. He still had eight strikeouts to push his total to an SEC-best 102 this season, but he also gave up six hits. 

Mississippi State (29-9, 11-6 SEC) sophomore Will Bednar (3-1, 3.14), meanwhile, was effective in his five-inning start. He struck out eight, walked three and allowed one run after allowing six to Ole Miss last weekend. 

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The Bulldogs got to Leiter right away on senior center fielder Rowdey Jordan's leadoff home run. Sophomore catcher Logan Tanner also homered, and he drove in three of Mississippi State's runs. 

Vanderbilt (30-7, 12-5) scored three runs in the seventh, all with Mississippi State shutdown reliever Landon Sims on the mound. Sims inherited two runners, who both scored, and let another cross the plate as well. 

Sims worked a 1-2-3 eighth to stabilize the Bulldogs and retain their three-run advantage. Sims also sat the Commodores down in order in the ninth. He had six strikeouts in 2 2/3 innings. 

Mississippi State goes for its fourth SEC series win in a row Sunday with freshman pitcher Jackson Fristoe (3-2, 4.08) getting his usual Sunday start. 

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Contact Tyler Horka at thorka@gannett.com. Follow @tbhorka on Twitter. To read more of Tyler's work, subscribe to the Clarion Ledger today!