Clearfield Legion upended by Beech Creek in CPL playoffs|
Thursday, July 12, 2012
By Jon Christoff Sports Writer
BEECH CREEK - Instant replay has been discussed ad nauseam at the major league level.
Baseball purists insist that the human element is essential to the game, and whatever calls are made in the blink of an eye should stand.
After Wednesday night's Central Penn League playoff game at Beech Creek, Clearfield American Legion coach Sid Lansberry and his Chiefs would probably vote against the purists.
A couple of bang-bang plays went against Post 6 after the umpires conferred, the second of which came in the bottom of the seventh where Post 623 scored the winning run.
Ethan McGill, who committed a two-out error in the top of the seventh that allowed the tying run to score, bounced a grounder up the first base line with the bases loaded and one out in the bottom half.
Clearfield pitcher Derek Danver fielded the dribbler and had to turn awkwardly to get a throw off to catcher Andrew Redden. Redden's foot crept off the plate before the ball hit his glove, but his sweep tag appeared to have tagged out Clayton Butler before he touched home.
The play stood as called after an appeal and the Chiefs dropped an 8-7 decision as a result.
"It was a tough game to lose," said Lansberry. "We hit the heck out of the ball, and Ronny (Ogden) pitched pretty well. It was just one of those games where a couple of missed plays late cost us a couple runs. They're a good, sound team, but I think we played well. It could have gone either way."
The controversial call was the second in the contest that went in Beech Creek's favor, as the first led to the game-tying run in the bottom of the fifth inning.
Kyle McGregor led off the frame against Ogden by chopping a grounder at third baseman Coleman Kubala.
Kubala's throw was off the mark and first baseman Jon Janocko missed the tag, allowing McGregor to reach. The first base umpire appealed to home on the tag, while Janocko ran to put the tag on McGregor farther down the first-base line.
Lansberry and his staff said McGregor never touched first and should be out, but the Beech Creek shortstop was ruled safe on the play and later went on to tie the game at 6.
Aside from the pair of calls, Post 6 got on the board early and often against Beech Creek starter Justin Houser.
Janocko and Danver had 2-run singles and Redden drove in one with a single of his own to force Houser from the bump in only 1 2/3 innings of work.
Redden later added an RBI double to plate Kyler Kephart, who was 2-for-3 with a double and a pair of runs scored - the second of which came on McGill's dropped fly ball.
"He was a pretty good pitcher," Lansberry said. "He pitched for Central Mountain this year. I thought it was going to be a close game, but there was a lot more hitting than I thought. "
Ogden was the hard-luck loser for the Chiefs after hurling 6-plus innings.
The Post 6 starter allowed nine hits, walked three and struck out one.
"Ronny just ran out of gas a little bit," said Lansberry, whose team travels to Mifflin County in a loser's bracket game on Friday. "We had chances to score earlier, too, but I thought we played pretty well. A couple of errors just cost us."
K. Kephart rf-2b 3220, Danver ss-p 3212, Redden c 4132, Janocko 1b 3012, R. Ogden p-rf 4010, Kubala 3b 3000, T. Ogden cf 4000, C. Kephart 2b-ss 3110, Collins lf 1100, Westen lf 1000. Totals: 29-7-9-6.
Probst cf-p 4112, C. Hanley 2b 3121, McGregor ss 4111, Stacey c 4120, Butler 3b 2112, Houser p-rf-lf 3000, Nyman lf-cf 4220, Reed 1b 1100, B. Hanley ph 0000, Holter rf-p-rf 1000, McGill rf 1001. Totals: 27-8-9-7.
Score by Innings
Clearfield 230 100 1-7 9 5
Beech Creek 220 120 1-8 92
One out when winning run scored.
Errors-Danver 3, Kubala 2; Reed, McGill. LOB-Clearfield 6, Beech Creek 9. DP-Clearfield. 2B-K. Kephart, Redden; Probst. SF-Butler. SAC-Janocko, Kubala; Holter 2, Houser. SB-K. Kephart. HBP-K. Kephart (by Houser); Reed (by R. Ogden).
Clearfield: R. Ogden-6+ IP, 9 H, 8 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, 1 SO; Danver-1/3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 0 SO.
Beech Creek: Houser-1 2/3 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 1 SO; Holter-3 1/3 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 SO; Probst-2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO.
WP-Probst. LP-R. Ogden.