North Adams, Mass. - The Mountaineers offense pounded out 11 runs on 13 hits while Casey Delgado pitched seven solid innings to lead Vermont (15-16) to an 11-4 win at North Adams in New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) action on Wednesday night. The win was Vermont's third in a row and their third straight victory over the SteepleCats (18-15).
North Adams jumped out to an early 1-0 when Jeff Roy singled to begin the game and later scored on an RBI groundout from Charlie Law. From there, Delgado (Miami, Fla./Austin Peay) was dominant not allowing another run to score. The righty only allowed multiple baserunners once, loading the bases in the third with one out before earning an inning ending double play.
The Mountaineers struggled in the first two innings, loading the bases with nobody out in the second. In the top of the third, Brian O'Grady worked a lead off walk before Aaron Barbosa grounded out to send him to second. Rob Kelly was then hit by a pitch before advancing to second on a wild pitch. With runners on second and third and one out, Austin Green laced a two RBI single through the left side to put Vermont up by one. Logan Pierce (Troy, Ala./Troy) singled to put runners on first and second and scored when Brett Johnson (Little Elm, Texas/TCU) hit a ground rule double to score Green making the score 3-1 Vermont. A wild pitch brought Pierce across the plate while a Michael White groundout scored Johnson to make it a 5-1 lead going into the bottom of the third.
Those five runs spelled the end for SteepleCats starter Christian MacDonald as North Adams turned the ball over to Bubba Baroniel, Jr. to begin the fourth inning trailing by four.
They would add three more in the fourth courtesy of a Green (San Diego, Calif./San Diego) two run homer, giving him four RBI on the night, and an O'Grady (Warminster, Pa./Rutgers) RBI ground rule double gave Vermont eight unanswered runs. In the top of the sixth, Barbosa (Dracut, Mass./Northeastern) reached on a fielders choice and later scored on Kelly's (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif./Saint Anselm) RBI single with two outs. Leading 9-1 in the top of the seventh, White blasted a two run shot off reliever Matt Longflied making it a 10 run Vermont lead after seven.
Delgado was dominant, turning in his second seven inning performance of the year. At one point, he set down seven of eight including four in a row in the middle of the game. In the bottom of the eighth, Vermont turned to Steve Ostapeck out of the bullpen. After striking out Jeff Roy to begin the frame, Ostapeck (Sacramento, Calif./Villanova) put two runners on before giving up a three run shot to Bryan Soloman cutting the Mountaineers lead to 11-4. He would get out of the inning and Kyle Grana (St. Louis, Mo./Bellarmine) tossed a scoreless ninth to preserve the win.
Delgado (2-2) picked up the win scattering five hits allowing one run while striking out a season high seven batters. Meanwhile, MacDonald (0-2) dropped his second decision allowing five runs on three hits in three innings pitched.
Vermont wraps up a three game stretch with a road game at Holyoke on Thursday July 19 at MacKenzie Stadium. All game action can be heard live on ESPN 1240, WSKI and online at www.thevermontmountaineers.com.
Game Notes: Kelly's RBI gave him 36 on the year, tying Newport's Yale Rosen for the NECBL lead and putting him six shy of Effrey Valdez's 2010 single season mark of 42 set with the Lowell All-Americans...Vermont stole two bases in the game giving them a league high 93, putting them 25 shy of tying their own NECBL single season record of 118 set in 2011.
Volunteers are the heart and soul of the Vermont Mountaineers and the NECBL. If you'd like to help support the team, we have an opportunity for you.