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Not doing little things results in another loss for Pitman
Hayden Baldwin of Pitman High pitches in a 5-3 loss to Ceres High on Thursday afternoon at the Windemuth Classic in Modesto. - photo by CHHUN SUN / The Journal
MODESTO — Stealing bases, laying down a bunt to help advance a teammate, utilizing the team’s speedsters. Those are the little things that were occasionally absent this week for the Pitman High baseball team, with all the misery coming to an end Thursday afternoon at Davis High.
The Pride concluded the 41st Windemuth Classic with another loss, this one a 5-3 bummer to Ceres High. That meant Pitman finished up the tournament losing three of four games, a showing that disappointed coach Mick Tate.
“I still feel like we’re a little flat right now,” he said. “We’re not playing where we need to play. For us to be successful, we need to do all the little things right. And obviously, we didn’t do that today.”
The Pride were down 5-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning against the Ceres Bulldogs (8-8-1 overall) before Pitman sprinted to a two-run rally to make the game interesting. The Pride were in position for a triumphant comeback in their final at-bat when Mike Lopes went to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs.
The game ended when Lopes found himself watching the third and final strike land in the catcher’s glove. But it’s not fair to pinpoint the loss to that one at-bat. Again, Tate said, the Pride could have executed better from the start.
“We had a chance at the end, but that’s baseball,” said sophomore outfielder Zach Olsen, who scored a run along with Colton Risley and Lopes. “That’s how things sometimes happen. (I’m) kind of disappointed, but it’s all good. You gotta look forward to league coming up.”
The Pride (12-7 overall) will look to boost their 4-0 start in the Central California Conference with an one-and-one series with Merced High starting with Wednesday’s road game at 4 p.m., before hosting the Bears on Friday at the same time.
Tate hopes his Pride will have learned from the tournament’s losses by then.
“We have to do the little things, like bunting people up, using our speed, stealing bases, being successful,” he said. “We didn’t play anywhere close to what we expect. I was telling the kids, ‘The good thing about that, this is just a tournament. Next week, we got to get back to business.’”
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.