By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Diamondbacks overcome rally, ready for title game
Drew Lewis of the Junior Diamondbacks throws a pitch during his team’s victory over the Junior Braves on Monday afternoon. - photo by CHHUN SUN / The Journal
After blowing a big lead to pieces, the Junior Diamondbacks of the Turlock Little League did not panic.
This was expected.
The Diamondbacks played with a different pitching rotation and inserted a new batting lineup, while some starters sat out, in their makeup game against the Junior Braves and still managed to pull off the 18-9 victory despite a late-game rally at Pedretti Sports Complex on Monday afternoon.
The Diamondbacks didn’t operate at full strength because they knew what was up ahead: They are set to clash against the Junior Angels in the City Championship at 7 p.m. on Thursday at the same location. This time, manager Joe Lewis said, the Diamondbacks will showcase their best lineup and pitching.
“We let some of the guys who haven’t pitched during the year pitch,” he added about Monday’s performance. “We had a different rotation since some of our starters were sitting. We were a little sluggish.”
At first, however, the Diamondbacks looked like the powerful team that finished the regular season with a 12-4 record, busting out with a 3-0 lead after one inning. They scored on four errors, while providing no hits. In fact, they managed to score 11 times in the first three frames before finally getting three hits in the fifth.
How did they manage to be in control?
Their base-running was almost impeccable.
The Diamondbacks started the second inning with a walk from Jamison Vorse that was followed by five runs, thanks in part to a number of stolen bases. They scored three more runs in the third, but were held scoreless in the fourth. By then, Gerardo Trujillo led the charge by crossing home plate three times, as he went on to score once more in his team’s final at-bat.
The Braves made it interesting with eight runs in the third and fourth innings, cutting the lead to 11-8. Tyler McCone provided his team’s top highlight when he sailed a shot to right field that eventually sent in two runners while he enjoyed a triple before making it home after an error.
That only gave the Diamondbacks motivation to finish the game with a bang, as they produced seven runs on three hits in the bottom of the fifth. Mario Aguirre collected three runs, as Nicholas Renteria, Kyle Luiz and Justin Bradley scored two runs apiece.
“We already locked up our side,” Lewis said. “Thursday is the big game we’re worried about.”
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.