Senior left-hander Jerad Grundy retired 24 of the 26 batters he faced and struck out a career-high 12 Saturday in Kentucky's 7-0 victory over Akron at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Grundy (3-0) gave up two singles, walked none and did not allow a runner past first base in eight innings. He has a 0.43 ERA and 24 strikeouts in 21 innings this season, and he's holding hitters to a .125 average.
"Grundy just commanded the fastball and the change-up," freshman catcher Greg Fettes said. "When you have those two working, it is really hard to hit. He was hitting his spots and that is all you can ask."
UK's A.J. Reed broke a scoreless tie with a solo home run in the fourth inning, his fourth of the season. UK (9-1) added three-run innings in the fifth and sixth.
Reed went 3-for-4 with three RBI. Fettes also went 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs in his second career start.
Lucas Witt had two hits and two steals, and J.T. Riddle extended his hitting streak to 13 games.
The win was UK's sixth in a row since a 7-5 loss to Kansas State on Feb. 21. The Cats have a 10-game winning streak at home dating to last season.
The series finale with Akron is 1 p.m. Sunday. Kentucky outscored Akron 28-2 in the first two games.
Akron (0-9) won't have to worry about Grundy on Sunday. UK will send junior lefty Corey Littrell (0-0) against junior right-hander J.T. Brubaker (0-2).
So far, Grundy has lived up to his billing as the seventh-best senior in college baseball, according to Baseball America's pre-season rankings.
The 6-foot-1, 200-pound transfer from Miami (Fla.) and Heartland College retired the first eight batters he faced — seven by strikeout — before allowing an infield single that was grabbed by shortstop Matt Reida.
"Jerad did a great job," UK Coach Gary Henderson said. "I thought he was on top of it the entire day and I was really glad to see him improve."
Akron at Kentucky
When: 1 p.m. TV: WWTF-AM 1580