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By Dean Barker
The Stuarts Draft Diamondbacks jumped out early to necessitate the mercy rule for the Elkton Blue Sox, winning 15-0 Friday, June 18 at Draft Diamond Club. With the seven inning win, the Diamondbacks improved to 3-2 on the year, while the Blue Sox fell to 0-5.
Trevor Vernon picked up the win for Stuarts Draft to move to 1-0 on the season, striking out three on only two hits in 6 1/3 innings. Elliot Erkel took the loss for Elkton to move to 0-2 on the year, giving up 10 runs in three innings. Gauge Jenkins gave up five runs in 1 ⅔ innings.
The Diamondbacks scored first with a two run homer to center field by Cody Bartley in the first inning. Following a double to the center field wall by Chaz Harvey in the second, Gavin Bush added another run with a triple to make the score 3-0 Stuarts Draft.
The D-Backs managed to bat around the lineup in the bottom of the third and drive in seven runs. With three walks and a single to begin the inning, Stuarts Draft added one. A Bobby Funk flyout was too shallow to bring anyone in, but Tyler Wilcher would bring in another run with a sacrifice groundout to shortstop. Gavin Bush would drive in two with an RBI single, and Zach Roberts would clobber a three run shot to center to make the score 10-0.
Not quite satisfied with their lead, Stuarts Draft set out to get some insurance runs in the sixth. With two outs and the bases loaded, Gavin Bush dribbled an infield single to second base to drive in one. To put the nail in the coffin, Roberts hit a no-doubter grand slam over the center field wall to make it 15-0, his second homer of the night. The Diamondbacks batted around the lineup for their second time.
After a strikeout to begin the seventh, D-Backs head coach Leslie Sandridge decided to take him out and get a standing ovation. Lucas Adams would hit two batters, but would strikeout two to put the Blue Sox out of their misery.
The Blue Sox left four runners on base and had one stolen base from Jeremy Kwolek, who also had one of Elkton’s two hits. Jack Marshall went 1-2 with a single for the Blue Sox.
Roberts went 2-4 for the Diamondbacks with two homers for seven RBIs and a walk. Bush went 3-4 with four RBIs. Bartley went 1-3 with two walks and two RBIs from his homer. Tyler Wilcher went 0-2 with two walks, but he drove in one with a sacrifice grounder in the third. Canterbury went 1-2 with two walks, one of which resulted in a run in the third. Chaz Harvey went 1-2 with two walks and a double off the wall in the second.
Roberts was pleased all around with the team’s performance.
“We were just hunting fastballs early in the count, and we weren’t missing pitches today,” Roberts told RCBL’s Dean Barker. “I think the big thing for Trevor (Vernon) was throwing strikes, and I thought him and Chaz (Harvey) did really good tonight.”
The Diamondbacks will be back in action tomorrow evening in Bridgewater when they take on the Reds at 7:30 pm. The Blue Sox will seek their first win tomorrow when they host the New Market Shockers at 7:30.
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