Errors costly for Diamondbacks
EL DORADO — Ryan Rodriguez capped an 11-run second inning with a grand slam as El Dorado defeated host Union Mine Wednesday afternoon in the first of a three-game Sierra Valley Conference set.
All 11 runs came with two out. Errors let in five of the runs, Michael Green singled in two and Rodriguez plated four. All 11 were unearned as was the Cougars’ final tally.
“We played well today … pitched well, good infield defense and took advantage of their mistakes,” El Dorado coach Rusty McDonald said. “Right now we’re pushing for the playoffs so these next six games are crucial.”
D’back starter Bailey Phillis induced a grounder with three on and two out but an errant throw kept the the Cougars batting. Ditto on the next play, a booted ball, that put El Dorado up 4-0 and it got worse from there as the visitors cashed in.
Defensively we were bad today,” Union Mine coach Brett Robinson said. “You can’t give a team like El Dorado extra chances.”
Rodriguez’ slam came on a 3-2 pitch and cleared the left field fence for runs eight through 11.
“I was sitting on a fastball and just wanted to put it in play to get some runs in,” Rodriguez said. “At first I thought it’d be caught but then it sailed.”
Green went the distance on the mound, striking out six. He retired the first six of the game and the last seven, striking out the side in the seventh to end it.
Union Mine did score three runs off Green in the fourth as Joel Pedretti doubled in RJ Blake and Brendan Hunter and scored on an error/fielder’s choice off the bat of John Creason.
“I felt good in the beginning but let up in the fourth with the big lead,” Green said. “After that I said ‘enough is enough’ and just wanted to get the job done.”
The D’backs received excellent long relief from Greg Alloway who threw four shutout innings of one-hit ball.
The Cougars added a run in the seventh as Zach Culp (2-for-3) and Louis Merlo (2-for-5, double) singled and Culp scored on an error.