At any level of baseball competition, when a team’s pitching staff issues 19 walks in a game it is a pretty good bet that they won’t come out on the winning side. That is precisely what happened last Saturday morning in Manchester as the Greyhounds played host to a very tough Peebles 1 squad in a game that was to decide the regular season champion in the Southern Hills Youth League “A” division.
For a game of such importance, the Greyhounds laid a giant egg against a team that is too good to give any free gifts to, much less 19 free passes plus four errors. Peebles took full advantage of their gifts and rolled to a 15-5 victory, clinching the “A” regular season title with a final league mark of 7-1, while the Greyhounds dropped to 5-3.
The game was a completion of a contest from last month that had been washed out after just a half inning of action. In the top of the first, Peebles had scored one run so Saturday’s action began with the Hounds at bat in the bottom half of the frame. With Austin Parks on the hill for the visitors, Manchester showed some early signs of promise by scoring twice on an RBI triple by Nick Hoskins and a run-scoring base hit by Haden Anderson but it was all downhill from there.
The roof caved in on the Hounds in the top of the third with them still holding the 2-1 advantage. Peebles scored six times off starter Cole Roades, taking advantage of two Manchester errors with the bases loaded and then getting a two-run double from Daniel Wolford. Parks was hit by a pitch with the bases still full and an RBI ground out by Austin Newkirk put the guests on top 7-2.
Manchester got one of those back in the bottom of the third on a run-scoring hit by Rickey DeAtley, but Peebles matched that score in the fourth when a fielder’s choice off the bat of Tyler Fenner scored Ryan Brown from third base.
Again in the bottom of the fourth, the Hounds added a run to stay within striking distance when an RBI ground out by Mason Applegate brought Hoskins home. Arturo Hernandez came on in relief for Manchester in the fifth, relieving Roades, and he pitched a scoreless frame, but his team went down 1-2-3 in their half.
Any hopes the home team had of pulling off a comeback win vanished quickly over the next two Peebles at-bats. Hernandez lost sight of the strike zone and loaded the bases with three bases on balls with just one out. A fourth walk, this one to Newkirk, forced home a run. Alex Seaman got the next run home for Peebles with a fielder’s choice ground ball that made it 10-4.
A Nathan Davis base hit produced a run for Manchester in the bottom of the sixth, but that just set the stage for Peebles to blow it wide open in the seventh. The visitors got to three Manchester pitchers, Hernandez, Davis, and Kaulen Cox for five runs in an inning that saw the Greyhound hurlers walk a monotonous seven batters, leading to five more Peebles runs and a double digit lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, Parks finished off his complete game effort in quick fashion with the game ending on a double play ground out to second baseman Lane Hanson and Peebles had an “A” league title to take back home with them.
Parks went the distance to get the win, allowing just four hits and striking out three as his defense was solid throughout the contest. Peebles only managed five hits in the game but they didn’t need many without getting any pitches in the strike zone to swing at. Two of those hits came from Austin Newkirk who also drove home a pair as his team clinched the league championship.
Mark Carpenter can be reached at 937-544-2391 or on Twitter @adamscosports.
106 102 5 —15
201 101 0 —5
Peebles Hitting (AB-R-H-RBI): Seaman 2-2-0-2, R. Brown 4-2-1-0, Hanson 3-1-0-1, J. Penn 5-2-1-1, Wolford 3-3-1-2, Fenner 2-0-0-1, L. Newkirk 1-1-0-0, C. Brown 2-0-0-0, Lightner 2-1-0-0, Parks 2-1-0-2, A. Newkirk 3-1-2-2, S. Penn 0-1-0-1, Team 29-15-5-12.
Extra-Base Hits: J. Penn 2B, Wolford 2B
Manchester Hitting (AB-R-H-RBI); DeAtley 2-1-1-1, Roades 2-0-0-0, A. Hernandez 1-0-0-0, Davis 2-1-1-1, Hoskins 3-2-1-1, Anderson 2-0-1-1, Applegate 3-0-0-1, Carpenter 3-0-0-0, Thatcher 2-0-0-0, Kaulen Cox 2-1-0-0, Kaige Cox 1-0-0-0, D. Hernandez 1-0-0-0, Team 25-5-4-5.
Extra-Base Hits: Hoskins 3B
Peebles Pitching: Parks (W) 7 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 94 pitches.
Manchester Pitching: Roades (L) 4 IP, 3 H, 8 R, 4 ER, 5 BB, 8 K, 76 pitches
Hernandez 1.2 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 7 BB, 1 K, 44 pitches
Davis 0.1 IP, 1 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 16 pitches
Kaulen Cox 1 IP, 0 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 5 BB, 1 K, 40 pitches