The Dalles Babe Ruth 15U team came up against the proverbial immovable object Tuesday against the host Twin Cities team of Centralia, losing 11-4 against last year’s fourth place winners at the Babe Ruth World Series.
Twin Cities drew first blood quickly and in a big way, knocking in five runs in the top of the first inning, and two in the second, putting The Dalles in a catch-up position through the rest of the game.
“They were tough, as I expected,” said coach Matt McCall. “The five-run first inning put us down a little bit and we were trying to peck away at the lead and couldn’t catch up.”
The Twin Cities pitcher was clocked in the mid-80s for pitching speed, McCall noticed.
“But we didn’t strike out a lot,” he said. “We put a lot of balls in play. We attempted to play small ball a few times, but it didn’t work this time.”
The team still has plenty to be proud off, with a 10-game winning streak leading up to this contest.
The Dalles got into an answering mood in the third inning, getting their rally going with a series of consecutive singles from Alex Bailey, Devin Wilson, and Dawsen Reynier, the Payton Eaton was hit by a pitch, and Matt Strizich singled, helping the first trio to score, bringing the contest back into range at 7-3.
Twin Cities answered in the fourth with a single run for an 8-3 score.
The Dalles added one more run in the fifth inning as Alex Cash walked and was advanced by a series of other walks in the inning, bringing the tally to 8-4.
Twin Cities added three more runs in the seventh inning to cap their 11-4 win.
A committee of pitchers led The Dalles from the mound, with Dawson Reynier, pitching one inning and giving up five hits.
“Dawson Reynier was throwing strikes, but they hit pretty hard and that put us in a jam off the get-go,” McCall said.
Bailey Ortega pitched four innings, giving up four hits and striking out two. Bryce Larsen finished the game, pitching two innings, earning two strikeouts and giving up only one hit.
“Then Bailey Ortega came in and, I thought, kept them in check,” McCall said. “They had a couple of errors behind him, though. Bryce Larsen came in in the last two innings and did very well, in my opinion. It was one of their best outings of the year.”
The Dalles plays next Thursday morning, Aug. 1, at 10 a.m. against Alberta in pool play. They’ll also play North Washington on Friday, Aug. 2 at 1 p.m.
The game starts at 7 p.m. and will be streamed at http://stereo.wavestreamer.com.