Shorthanded Bay Sox Stumble, Drop Third Straight in 7-2 Loss to Waves
The shorthanded New Bedford Bay Sox, who amassed some injuries during the busy stretch of the NECBL season, could not muster up a comeback on Saturday night and dropped to .500 after a 7-2 loss to Ocean State.
New Bedford had just one position player available on the bench, and were stifled at the plate by four Waves' pitchers. Rafe Chaumette (Trinity) and Jacob Yish (Boston College) had two hits apiece for the Bay Sox, who fell to 13-13 and back into fourth place in the crowded Southern Division.
Starter R.J. Wagner (Dayton) struggled for the second straight outing, allowing five runs (four earned) on six hits in five innings of work for his first loss of the season. The junior also gave up five runs (two earned) on six hits in his last start on June 29th vs. Mystic, but the Sox pounded out 13 runs in that wild home win. The Waves seemed to have Wagner figured out, as they loaded their lineup with left-handed batters, as southpaws hit .364 entering Saturday night's contest against the Bay Sox hurler.
The Waves got on the board in the first inning on a controversial play at the plate. Grant English doubled with one out for the road squad and moved to third on a grounder to the right side. English was very aggressive on a ball-four pitch to cleanup hitter Ryan Ward to give the Waves the early advantage. Justin Lamazares (Barry) had a tough time finding the low pitch, which allowed English to break home. The Bay Sox catcher found the ball and dashed to cover the plate but was barely beat by the slide of Ocean State's first baseman on an extremely close play.
New Bedford tied the game in the bottom of the second with the help of an error at second base from Cullen Smith. Chaumette singled with one down, moved to second on a passed ball, and marched 90 feet away from home on a grounder by Yish. Lamazares hit what should have been the third out to second, but the ball went right through the wickets of Smith to allow Chaumette to cross the plate and tie it up at 1-1.
The Waves regained the lead in the third, as a single and a two-base error in right field from Yish placed two runners in scoring position for Smith. The Waves' second baseman made up for his error an inning earlier, as Smith drove in both runs with a single to right field. Ocean State tacked on two more runs in the fourth, with English belting a two-run double to the wall in right center field to make it 5-1.
The Bay Sox were able to collect back-to-back singles from Austin Markmann (Sacred Heart) and Chaumette, but some aggressive baserunning from Markmann resulted in the second out of the fifth. With Markmann on first, Chaumette laid down a nice bunt for a hit, but the Bay Sox third baseman tried to catch the Waves napping and move from first to third. Markmann beat the throw across the diamond but slid past the bag and was tagged out.
Sam Henrie (Southern New Hampshire) came in to begin the sixth inning and retired the Waves in order in his only inning of work. Buddy Hayward (Harvard) worked the seventh and allowed two walks and an RBI single from Ward for Ocean State's sixth run. Noah Stern (Barry) stepped in for the eighth and was erratic, hitting two batters, allowing a single, and walking in a run before first baseman Andrew Rapoza (Barry) made two nice plays to keep the score 7-1. The first baseman/catcher made another great play in the ninth, stretching to a near split on a slow roller down the first base line.
New Bedford collected three of their nine hits in the bottom of the ninth, with Yish driving in Rapoza with a single to center field for the home team's second run.
The loss is New Bedford's third in a row, while the Waves vaulted over the Bay Sox with their victory, moving to 12-11. The two teams will see each other for the third time in nine days on Thursday in Ocean State. New Bedford will play a doubleheader on Sunday in North Adams, then travel to Winnipesaukee on Monday before returning home on Tuesday to face a hot Mystic Schooners squad.
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