GLEN ROSE – For the first time this season, the Tigers are winners of four-straight games after a 14-0 throttling Wednesday afternoon of visiting Rio Vista.
The game, originally scheduled for Tuesday, was a five-inning run rule that took just over two hours to complete. It was also the second-consecutive shutout tossed by the Glen Rose pitching staff.
“It is important for our guys to stay focused over these two games [against Rio Vista and Keene],” Glen Rose Head Coach James Evans said. “We needed to come out and play well today against a team that isn’t very good and we did. We need to do the same thing Friday against Keene and get locked in for the seeding tournament on Saturday, because it’ll be a huge roll into the playoffs.”
The playoff-seeding tournament between Glen Rose, Peaster and Grandview is tentatively scheduled for 12, 2 and 4 p.m. Saturday afternoon in Brock. However, it could potentially be pushed back to 2, 4 and 6 p.m. if weather prevents the three teams, expected to finish 10-4 in district play, from playing their final 11-3A games Friday evening.
Glen Rose holds a 3-1 combined record over Grandview and Peaster with its only loss coming April 8 against the Greyhounds, 4-3, in Peaster.
Devin Crawford, Camron Rush and Codey Barker combined for a one-hit shutout with seven strikeouts and two walks on 53 pitches. The Tigers also faced just two batters over the minimum (17) thanks partly to Drayton Williams gunning down two would-be base stealers.
The second straight scoreless outing helped all three Tiger hurlers lower their ERAs below 2.00. With his three innings and five strikeouts Wednesday, Crawford now sports a team-low 1.70 ERA over 45.2 IP to go with his 11.8 K/7 (strikeouts per seven innings pitched), 2.8 BB/7 and 4.6 H/7.
The lefty also recorded his fifth win of the season to match Rush’s 5-2 record on the bump.
With offensive sparkplug Tyler Torres out of action for the next month, Gus Stoner was moved up four spots in the Tiger batting order and Ty Campbell, Torres’ replacement at second base, was slid into the No. 8-hole. Both produced in their new roles.
“Torres is a great player who is leading the team in a lot of things for us offensively,” Evans said. “Hopefully he can get healed and bounce back in before the year is over. […] But I told them all year long that if someone goes down then they are going to have to step up and fill their shoes. So we will see what happens.”
Stoner has been an on-base machine for the majority of the season. With Torres out, his .475 on-base percentage is second only to Layne McAnear’s .476 OBP and the 16 free passes Stoner has been awarded – seven of the hit-by-pitch variety – are far-and-away the team lead.
Stoner added a walk and hit to his totals during his 1-for-2 day at the plate Tuesday. He also scored two runs and added his eighth RBI of the season with a single in the fourth inning.
Despite not recording a hit, Campbell reached base and scored in all three of his trips to the plate Wednesday. He entered the game with just two runs scored on the season.
Barker and Dylan Hammond each recorded one of the six Tiger hits to run their team-high hit streaks to a modest four games.
The (14-6, 9-4) Tigers conclude their regular season with a 3:30 p.m. first pitch Friday in Glen Rose against Keene. The game was originally scheduled for a 7 p.m. first pitch in Keene, but the threat of severe weather forced the change in venue and time.
Glen Rose won the previous meeting, 15-2, on April 5 behind a five-inning gem by Barker (2-2, 2.00 ERA). The right-handed hurler needed just 61 pitches to record eight strikeouts in his five-inning complete-game win.