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Mistakes cost Cutters in finale against Jamestown

August 29, 2012 - Mitch Rupert
By MITCH RUPERT

mrupert@sungazette.com

Larry Greene Jr. watched Cameron Perkins get thrown out at second base after he swung through a full-count fastball in the ninth inning and slowly turned toward Williamsport's first-base dugout.

With the bat in his right hand, he tossed it toward foul territory and watched it helicopter toward the on-deck circle. There was frustration in the Crosscutters' left fielder's bat toss. He swung through a very hittable fastball Wednesday night, the second such fastball in the at-bat he missed an opportunity to drive. Perkins, who was running on the play, was thrown out at second as the tying run.

It was another missed opportunity in a night where Williamsport dropped the finale of a three-game series with Jamestown, 4-3. The Cutters missed on another opportunity to sweep its first three-game series of the year thanks in part to four errors, including three by center fielder Kyle Hoppy.

"It's just disappointing because I feel like we can win," Cutters catcher Chace Numata said. "But it just makes you want to win more."

"I'm not pleased with the errors, obviously the ball going all over the field doesn't make me too happy," Cutters manager Andy Tracy said. "That's the one thing that's disappointing, but besides that it was a good ball game."

Williamsport scored in each of the first two innings, each time answering a run scored by Jamestown. But after a third-inning single from Kyle Hoppy, the Cutters didn't get another hit until Numata's single to left field to lead off the eighth inning. During that time, Jamestown starting pitcher Ramon Del Orbe faced the minimum. He allowed one baserunner, a fourth-inning walk to Mitch Walding, but erased that runner on a double play ball.

Del Orbe pounded the zone in his seven innings, throwing 57 of his 89 pitches (64 percent) for strikes. He faced just two three-ball counts in his seven innings. It was Del Orbe's second consecutive seven-inning outing, and second consecutive one against the Crosscutters.

"He was pounding the zone and he was throwing strikes, so mentally you have to be prepared to hit and get the right pitch," said Numata, who was 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored. "Throughout the game we were hitting here and there, we just couldn't connect the hits."

Williamsport scored in the first inning after Roman Quinn led off with his 11th triple of the season, an opposite-field shot off he left-field wall. The triple broke the Williamsport short-season record for triples in a season, previously set by Terry Joseph with the Williamsport Cubs in 1995. Hoppy knocked him in with a ground ball to tie the score at 1-1. Numata tied the game again in the second inning with a two-out, two-strike RBI single to left field to score Larry Greene Jr.

But it was the runs that the Cutters were surrendering that eventually cost them a win last night. They had a chance to turn an inning-ending double play in the first inning with runners on the corners and one out. Quinn made a great play ranging to the hole and making a strong feed to Gustavo Gonzalez at second. But Gonzalez couldn't get the ball out of his glove and the game's first run scored.

The Jammers had a runner on second with two outs in the second-inning when Cutters starter Manaure Martinez gave in to Jamestown nine-hole hitter Kentrell Dewitt with a 3-1 fastball. Dewitt hit a one-hopper off the wall in center field to score the run. Hoppy dropped the ball in center field allowing Dewitt to go to third, but he was stranded there.

In the third inning, Numata threw a ball into center field trying to catch Kolby Copeland stealing second base. As Hoppy came in to pick up the ball, he overran it and Copeland was waved around to the plate and scored. Hoppy had another error in the fifth inning when he threw way up the third-base line trying to get a runner at the plate allowing baserunners to advance to second and third. Martinez stranded those runners there with a ground out.

Hoppy, who was signed as a free agent earlier this summer to add some depth to a Cutters outfield that had been decimated by call-ups, had just two errors in 243 innings played this year prior to last night.

"It's just a rough ball game for him defensively," Tracy said. "It's going to happen as you play baseball long enough."

Numata cut Jamestown's 4-2 lead in half in the eighth inning when he singled to lead off the inning and then moved to third on a pair of ground outs. He scored with two outs on a passed ball to cut the lead to 4-3.

Williamsport had its opportunity to tie the game in the ninth inning when Cameron Perkins, who is hitting .351 in August, singled to start the ninth. But he never got to second base as Chris Serritella popped out to third base and Greene struck out on the front end of a strikeout, throw-out double play.

"Just get the tying run to the plate, that's all we can ask, and we usually do," Tracy said. "It not, it's just a baseball game where we got beat."

 
 

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Blog Photos

MARK NANCE/Sun-Gazette Williamsport's Roman Quinn connects for a triple in the bottom of the first inning Wednesday night at Bowman Field. It was Quinn's 11th triple of the season, breaking the Williamsport short-season record for triples in a season.