(Pittsfield, Ma) In what is a big series of games between Westfield and Pittsfield, the Suns host a doubleheader on July 28th. The two teams continue to battle for a playoff spot as Ian Donahue faces off against Graham Seed.
It would be the Suns who strike first and score in all but one inning in game 1. It would be a 2 RBI single in the bottom of the first from Seth Werchan that brought in both Brendan Jones and Jackson Appel. Despite the early shutout that would end Donhue’s night as he went 2 innings allowing 1 hit with 2 walks and 2 strikeouts.
The Suns strike again in the 3rd thanks to 2 doubles. The first coming from Jackson Appel and the other from Jack Thorbahn that drove in Appel. The 4th inning brought in 2 more runs as Tyler Cox’s single to right field brought home Jake Blinstrub. Brendan Jones later drove in Nate Cormier after a triple to center.
Both teams would score and replace their pitchers. In the top of the 5th was Jaden Brown with the single to right in order to drive Cody Bey in. Tim Cianciolo finished his outing in this inning as he went 3 innings, where he allowed 2 hits, 1 earned run, and 4 strikeouts. The Suns responded behind Jake Blinstrub who walked in order to help his team score. Javier Rosales crossed the plate after Teaghin Andre walked Blinstrub. Andre, the replacement for Seed, finished with 4 2/3 innings pitched. He would allow 8 hits, 6 runs (5 earned), 4 walks, and 8 strikeouts.
In the 6th inning we saw Pittsfield score in their last time up. Brendan Jones tripled again to center field which brought home Nate Cormier. Brendan Jones crossed the plate on the same play due to an error by the second baseman. Andre would be done there as well as Sun’s pitcher Ryan LaPierre in the next frame. For Andre he finished with a line of 1 1/3 inning, 2 hits, 2 runs (1 earned), 2 walks and 2 strikeouts. LaPierre’s line would not be scoreless thanks to the 7th inning.
It was a sloppy 7th for the Suns as they tallied all 3 of their errors. Add in a few errant pitches and the Starfires put up 4 runs. The first one scoring on a single to center from Peter DeMaria which brought in Hunter Pasqualini. Sean Burychka flew out to center to bring home an unearned Jaden Brown due to an error at short. That would finish the night for as he would finish with 1 2/3 innings pitched, 5 hits, 3 runs (1 earned), 1 walk and 1 strikeout. Matt Garbowski drove in the final run of the game on a single up the middle. Peter DeMaria scores as an unearned run. The final of the game is 8-4 and Ryan Langford grabs the save.
This set the Suns up for a very advantageous game 2 as a series sweep would seriously help them in the standings.
Sammy St. Jean
The Pittsfield Suns and Westfield Starfires would meet again in game number two of the evening, with another great pitchers duel ahead. Both the Suns and Starfires were looking for an important win in game number two, as the Suns looked to sweep their second straight doubleheader, and the Starfires look to avoid the sweep. Pittsfield native Christian Womble took the ball for the Suns in game number two as he was opposed by Ryan Shea for the Starfires.
Westfield would get a leadoff single, followed by another single from one of the hottest hitters in the FCBL in Cole Bartels. Both Seaburgh, who had the leadoff single, and Bartels would come around to score on Womble in the first inning to give Westfield the opening 2-0 lead. The Suns would cut that lead in half right away thanks to an RBI rope single from first baseman Cabot Maher, putting the score at a 2-1 Starfires advantage after one inning. The pitcher’s duel would begin after the first inning as both Shea for Westfield and Womble for Pittsfield would shut the door on the offense for both sides.
Pittsfield would score the games next run, as the Suns got a sacrifice fly to left field from their shortstop Nate Cormier to tie the ballgame at two apiece. Womble finished his outing going five innings giving up three hits and two runs while walking two and striking out seven Westfield batters. For the Starfires and Shea, he went five innings himself, giving up four hits and two runs while walking four and striking out five Suns.
The game would head into the final frame tied at two, though Westfield would come around and score one run to force the Suns into a sudden death situation in their home half of the seventh. Pittsfield would come around to score on a SAC fly from Mike Gervasi to tie the contest once again.
Both teams would threaten to score in the final frame of the ball game, though neither team would get a run across in the 8th, sending the game to the FCBL famous home run derby. In the derby, Pittsfield elected to hit second, forcing Westfield up to the dish first. In the combination of Peter DeMaria and Dan Hussey, Westfield was unable to come up with a home run. Pittsfield needed Jack Thorbahn to connect for one home run to sweep the doubleheader, and that is exactly what they got. Thorbahn and the Suns would come away with the 4-3 victory in the homerun derby, sending the Suns home with a sweep of the Westfield Starfires. Pittsfield and Westfield will meet for the fourth straight game on Thursday from Bullens Field. Pittsfield returns home on Saturday to take on the Brockton Rox with first pitch set for 6:05 pm.
Written by Collin Quinn- Pittsfield Suns Color Commentator