Gold team pitcher Tyson Butcher had to scramble to homeplate on a passed ball to tag out Navy Blue's John Brown in last Wednesday night's game between the two Upper Perk Babe Ruth teams.
The two teams that represent Upper Perk in the Tri-County Babe Ruth Baseball League locked horns last week at Baker Field. When the battle for bragging rights ended, the Navy team had come away with an 8-2 victory over the Gold squad.
The game was closer than the final score may suggest, and it was clear from the start that this was not just another game on the schedule. When the umpire said "play ball," the two teams did just that, beginning with Navy starting pitcher Jack Whitney, who struck out the side in the top half of the first inning.
It would be the Gold squad, though, who drew first blood Wednesday, plating a run in the top of the second. Chase Skavinsky and Austin Hillegass each singled. Skavinsky, who stole second, raced home on a throwing error with the game's first run giving the Gold a 1-0 lead.
The lead would stand until the home half of the third when the Navy squad put a three spot on the board. The rally was started by John Moran who led off with a double to left. Eric Schneider drew a walk, setting the table for Jake Dockery, who ripped a double down the left field line that gave the Navy a 2-1 lead. Dockery would score on a single off the bat of Whitney and the inning ended with the Navy squad holding a 3-1 lead.
Navy tacked on a run in the fourth when Matt Sitko, who opened the inning by drawing a walk, scored on Moran's infield single, making the score 4-2.
Whitney struck out the side again in the top of the fifth, but when the third strike to Jake Miller eluded the Navy catcher, Millers hustle allowed him to reach first safely. Miller's efforts would pay dividends for the Gold as he would eventually score on a base hit by Tyson Butcher.
Navy would score again in their half of the fifth inning using a double off the bat of Anthony Boyle, and an RBI single by Dylan Croissette to push the Navy lead back to three at 5-2.
Remington Harris tried to get a rally started for the Gold team in the top of the sixth when he opened the inning with a leadoff single. Harris would steal second, but found himself still standing on third when the inning ended.
When the Navy team scored three times in the bottom of the sixth the lead went to 8-2. The damage could have been greater had it not been for an outstanding catch in right field by Cory Aldinger. Aldinger ran down a ball off the bat of Jimmy Durkin for the second out of the inning. It was a single off the bat of Jon Brown that had started the Navy rally.
Despite being down six runs, the Gold squad battled to the end but could only produce a single off the bat of Garrett Young in their final at bat before Whitney finished the game the way he had started it, with yet another strike out.
Whitney struck out 11 while walking none in the complete game win. John Moran led the Navy offense going 2-2 with a walk and two runs scored. Chase Skavinsky 2-3 with a run scored led the Gold attack.
The win puts the Navy squad back on the plus side with a 5-4 record. The loss drops the Gold to 7-4, but still good enough to remain on top of the league's Central division. With the season just past the half-way point, both teams are hoping for a playoff rematch.