Emotion got the best of N.C. State shortstop Chris Diaz after a called third strike ended the Wolfpack’s baseball season in a 9-8 loss to Florida on Sunday.
Diaz angrily argued with home plate umpire Steve Corvi after Corvi called a third strike on Diaz with the game-tying run on second base in the 10th inning. N.C. State coach Elliott Avent ran out of the dugout to restrain Diaz.
“I regret my actions from the end of Sunday’s game,” Diaz said in a statement released by the school on Monday. “The emotions of the moment overwhelmed me, and unfortunately I acted in a way that was unsportsmanlike.
“I have tried throughout my career to be a leader for this team and university, and don’t want these actions to reflect poorly on N.C. State. I understand that the umpires and the NCAA officials have a difficult job to do, and I would like to apologize for the way I reacted in an emotional situation.”
Diaz, a junior, helped the Wolfpack win 43 games and advance to the Super Regional against the Gators. An 11th-round draft pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Diaz likely played in his final college game on Sunday.
He was 1-for-6 with three strikeouts on Sunday. For the season, he led the Wolfpack with 91 hits and was second in batting (.346). He was named All-ACC and second-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball.
“[Chris] has exhibited outstanding character both on and off the field during his career at N.C. State, and it’s unfortunate that his outburst on Sunday has left a negative impression,” Avent said in a statement released by the school. “He understands that the way he acted is not tolerated by our coaching staff or the administration of our university, and he’s sincerely apologized to me and our administrator since the incident. I have spoken with the umpires, they understand the situation and accepted his apology.
“Emotions have the ability to cloud the judgment of anyone, especially true competitors like Chris. My only hope is that our fans, our university, and the NCAA will accept his heartfelt apology.”