Pirates upend Blanchard, 7-4|
Thursday, June 21, 2012
By Jon Christoff Sports Writer
PHILIPSBURG - Shaky defense, errant base running and a lack of timely hitting are things the Philipsburg Pirates don't suffer through very often.
Especially not all at once.
Luckily for the Pirates, pitcher J.D. Mason made quick work of visiting Blanchard on Wednesday night in a Centre County League matchup.
The Bees, whose pitchers combined to throw 142 pitches, helped the Philipsburg right-hander, who needed only 75 to pick up a 7-4 win on the mound.
Mason labored the most in a pivotal sixth inning, but still only needed 16 pitches to get out of a potential game-changing jam.
Conversely, two Blanchard hurlers threw at least that many in five of six innings they took to the mound.
"J.D. threw a great game and he worked out of a lot of trouble," said Pirate first baseman Tyler Good. "He came back and beared down the last couple of innings, and there were some innings where he threw really well."
With the Pirates carrying a 7-3 advantage into the sixth, the Bees (5-9) made one final push at making things interesting.
An RBI double from Matthew Miller put runners on second and third with one out, but Mason bore down and left the two Blanchard runners stranded.
Mason fanned Liel Kerstetter and induced Brad Walker to fly out to center.
Mason only allowed one earned run on seven hits. He finished the contest with three strikeouts and didn't walk a batter.
"J.D. hit his spots and attacked the strike zone real well," Good said. "The defense came up for him that inning, and we were able to get out of it without much damage."
While Mason was in cruise control for the better part of the contest, the Pirates were uncharacteristic at the plate with runners on base.
Philipsburg drew seven walks in the contest and was hit three times by pitches, but aside from a two-run single in a four-run third from Nick Daye, the Pirates struggled to clutch up.
Daye led the Philipsburg six-hit attack with a 3-for-3 effort at the plate.
Daye, Ryan Mostyn and Jon Shaffer all doubled for the Pirates, who improved to 10-2.
"We told him when we made the lineup that he's the second leadoff hitter once the game gets started," said Good of Daye, who is the team's No. 9 hitter. "That's exactly what we asked out of him, and he came through today.
"Their offspeed pitches weren't getting across the plate real well, and we decided to sit back and wait for our pitches, get walked or get hit. It didn't matter ... we were getting on base."
Philipsburg returns to action Sunday at Spring Mills.
"It was a little uncharacteristic of us today," Good said. "We know we're better ballplayers than this. When it comes down to it, we'll be ready to go."
Heggenstaller cf 4210, Watkins ss-p 4121, McGhee 2b-ss 3001, Gallagher lf 3111, Vonada p-3b 3010, Todd c 2000, Miller 1b 3021, Kerstetter rf 3000, Walker 3b-2b 3000. Totals: 28-4-7-4.
Curtis 2b 3110, Winters ph 1000, McCamley rf 2001, Shaffer 3b 2010, Mostyn ss 3011, Robinson lf 2100, Je. Potter cf 3100, Good 1b 2200, Mason p 2101, Daye c 3132. Totals: 23-7-6-5.
Score by Innings
Blanchard 102 001 0-4 7 2
Philipsburg 114 010 x-7 6 3
Errors-Walker, Miller; Je. Potter, Robinson, Shaffer. LOB-Blanchard 5, Philipsburg 10. DP-Blanchard 2; Philipsburg 1. 2B-Heggenstaller, Watkins, Miller; Shaffer, Mostyn, Daye. SF-McGhee; McCamley. SB-Curtis. HBP-Todd (by Mason); Je. Potter, Good (by Vonada), Mostyn (by Watkins). WP-Watkins 3, Vonada 1. PB-Todd. Balk-Watkins.
Blanchard: Vonada-2+ IP, 3 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 6 BB, 2 SO; Watkins-4 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO.
Vonada pitched to four batters in the third.
Philipsburg: Mason-7 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 3 SO.