Williamsport drops Mahoning Valley 6-2 for sweep
Scrappers manager is ejected early after arguing a check-swing call
NILES, OH- The Scrappers continued their losing ways on Saturday evening, as they fell to the Williamsport CrossCutters 6-2.
The loss completed the sweep for Williamsport, and gave the Scrappers three losses during one of the biggest homestands, at least in terms of attendance, of the entire season.
The matchup started on a bit of a humorous note, as Scrappers manager Ted Kubiak was ejected from the game in the second inning. Kubiak’s blood was already boiling, thanks to two errors from his ballclub, and a blown check-swing call put him over the edge.
“I didn’t swear at him. I just told him how bad he was,” said Kubiak, when asked about his ejection. “These guys, they’re two new guys. They seem to be really novice, I don’t think they know much about the game. They go strictly by the book, which is fine, but you have to have a little knowledge of the game. But, they’re learning."
Immediately after his ejection, and a heated chat with the home plate umpire, Kubiak dallied his way over to the clubhouse and spent the rest of the evening in the bullpen.
Meanwhile on the field, the CrossCutters got out to an early 3-0 lead, while the Scrappers held on for the rest of the evening.
Scrappers first baseman Nellie Rodriguez put together one of his best performances as a Scrapper, smacking four singles and bringing in an RBI that put the Scrappers within a run.
“I just feel really confident right now. My swing feels good. I need to keep trusting my approach that Coach Larkin has been telling me.” Rodriguez gushed. “Everything is going perfect at the plate right now.
Rodriguez’ big night followed a good night yesterday in which he hit a mammoth three-run home run to centerfield.
The CrossCutters had a star of their own: Jiandido Trump. On the evening, Trump put together a three hit, three RBI performance that doubled his RBI total for the season.
Coming in, Tromp was hitting .214 with six hits, three doubles, and three RBI in ten games.
Each team had their star performer, but the rest of the evening was dominated by the story from the mound.
The Scrappers sent out lefty Kenny Matthews to start in his professional baseball debut. In two innings, Matthews allowed two runs on four hits, while striking out three and walking one. Matthews may not have put up spectacular numbers, but showed promise after working out of a huge second inning jam.
Four consecutive CrossCutters reached base in the second with only one out and immediately put the rookie Matthews in a tight spot. Fortunately, he settled down and struck out the next two batters, keeping two base-runners in scoring position off of the board.
Righty reliever Cole Sulser replaced Matthews and put together three innings of solid work, allowing a single run and striking out five.
The Scrappers held a 3-2 lead until the eighth inning when Trevor Frank ruined a nearly perfect outing.
Through two innings, Frank allowed only two hits and no runs, but those numbers were no more after he allowed three hits and two runs in the bottom of the eighth, propelling the CrossCutters to a three-run lead.
Finally, Indians fourth-round draft pick out of the University of Virginia, Kyle Crockett, pitched the ninth and allowed one unearned runs, thanks to yet another error.
For Williamsport, Mitch Guiller put together a nice outing. After a flawless four-inning start, Guiller fell back to earth and allowed a combined four hits and two runs in the fifth and sixth innings, but held a 3-2 lead upon his departure.
The CrossCutters bullpen bettered Guiller’s performance, pitching three innings of two hit, zero run baseball.
The loss sends Mahoning Valley on a quick three game road-trip to State College with a 7-13 record, while Williamsport returns home with an 11-7 mark.
Luis Lugo (1-1, 0.56 ERA) will hope to turn the fortunes of the Scrappers, as he embarks on his fifth start of the season. The starter for the Spikes is yet to be determined.
First pitch is set for 6:05.