Roswell completes sweep of Raton
Raton shortstop A.J. Doyle scoops up the ball and heads for the bag as second baseman Ryan Barban backs him up. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
By Karen Boehler
Pecos League writer
ROSWELL — The Invaders completed a four game sweep of Raton Saturday with an 8-3 win over the Osos at Joe Bauman Park.
It was just another day at the office for Roswell, which got a seven-inning pitching performance from Ed Kohout, with Ryan Richardson wrapping up the final two.
“Our pitchers did what they’re supposed to do, and actually all around, pitching, hitting and defense (was good),” said Invader manager Chris Ebright. “Tonight I think we had one error. Last night I think we had one and the night before we had zero. So that gives our pitchers confidence to throw the ball over the plate and we’re starting to come around. The guys are getting really excited. They’re having fun. We just take things one day at a time.”
Raton’s pitching improved as the series went on, but when the Osos threw well, they couldn’t field.
“We need to play better,” said Raton manager Ray Hancock. “That is what they tell me and I pretty much believe that. We have the players. My was pitching actually probably as good as I could ask from my pitcher tonight, but we let him down big time on a couple of terrible errors that, as far as I’m concerned, mentally we were not ready to play baseball. I don’t know what to say other than you’ve got to have your brain in the game. You just can’t bring your body. Your brain has to be here too with it.”
Oso starter Willie Frederick got hammered by errors in the second inning, giving up just two hits but three runs on two errors. After Charles Dubanoski walked, he came home on an error that put Goose Kallunki on base, who then came home on a put out.
Kohout and Reggie Taylor then both singled with Kohout scoring on a Ryan Normoyle sac fly.
After a scoreless third, the Invaders made it 5-0 when Kohout reached on a fielder’s choice, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on a Chad Kruse single. After stealing second, Kruse came in on a Normoyle triple.
The Invaders got their final three runs in the fifth when Vincent Mejia, Dubanoski and Roger Bernal singled, and, after advancing on the second out, came home on a Reggie Taylor single.
The Osos got all their runs in the sixth.
Stedman Smith, Ryan Barban and Nicholas Hinojo each singled, Smith scoring on Hinojo’s hit. Then with one out, Barban and Hinojo came in on the only Roswell error of the game.
And that was the last scoring from either side, as Freezy Smalls and Ivan Velasquez closed out the game for Raton.
Ebright was veery pleased with his two pitchers, especially Kohout’s seven-innings.
“Saves our bullpen,” he said. “I know last week we used up a lot of them, and a lot of bullpen guys were going day after day, so Ed did great. We want at least five, six out of our starters and he went seven and then Richie came in and did a great job.”
Hancock was also pleased with his starter, noting the errors made the difference.
“I feel like we’d probably be in extra innings right this minute, if I had to guess,” he said. “That’s exactly what I told my players after the game. Our starting pitcher, Mr. Frederick, he gave us everything he had. As far as I’m concerned, he pitched a great game. We just let him down. Again, we’ve got to keep our heads in the game. We’ve got to continue working hard. What else can I say?”
Both teams head north for Sunday’s games. Raton travels to Trinidad for one 2 op.m. game vs. the Triggers.
“I hope we come prepared to play,” Hancock said. “It’s going to be tough, but that’s part of this Pecos League.”
The Invaders have their first trip north, starting with a 2 p.m. matchup in Taos Sunday, then one at Raton and two at Trinidad,
“We’ll see how getting up early in the morning and having a day game will treat us tomorrow,” Ebright said. “Like I said, we’ll take one game at a time and still half a season left.”
Hitter Roger Bernal and catcher Zach Kreegar both wait for the ball. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
Willie Frederick pitched a string game for Raton, undone only by Oso errors. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
Roger Bernal slides into second ahead of the throw to Ryan Barban. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
Michael Lange gets ready to make the catch at first. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
The ultimate Invader fan throws out the first pitch at the start of Saturday's game. (Photo by Bob Bailey)
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