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Bethesda Big Train walk off Alexandria Aces in Cal Ripken League classic

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BETHESDA -- In a 15-inning marathon, the Bethesda Big Train tied the Alexandria Aces at the top of the division as they walked off the Aces 6-5.

Fans at Shirley Povich Field in Bethesda knew that they were in for a great game as the top two teams in the Cal Ripken League, the Alexandria Aces and Bethesda Big Train, were set to face off. No one, however, could have predicted the classic game that would unfold.

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Crosby’s sac fly lifts Express to 4-2 win over DC Grays

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ROCKVILLE—Two last place teams faced off Tuesday night as the Rockville Express (12-21, fifth in North division) hosted the DC Grays (11-20, fifth in South) at Montgomery College. The game remained tied until the bottom of the eighth inning when the Express added two more runs en route to a 4-2 win.

Rockville would strike first in the bottom of the first when outfielder Justin Smith hit an RBI single to drive in a run scored by outfielder Pearce Howard and give the Express an early 1-0 lead.

However, in the top of the fourth, DC would respond when outfielder Darius Gillus doubled to drive in first baseman Miles Jones and tie the game at 1-1. Then two at-bats later, hit an RBI triple as catcher Andrew Webb was able to round the bases, making his way from first to home plate to give the Grays a 2-1 lead.

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Gaithersburg Giants capture first victory against T-Bolts in fourth matchup of season

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GAITHERSBURG —After losing the first three games against Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts (10-16), the Gaithersburg Giants (15- 13) beat their divisional rivals 5-4 Saturday night.

The game at Criswell Automotive Field remained close throughout.

Silver Spring-Takoma outfielder Brett Leftridge hit a leadoff home run in the first inning to put the Thunderbolts on top, 1-0. Then outfielder Garrett Stonehouse hit an RBI double to score first baseman Jimmy Cain, taking the score to 2-0.

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Express upsets Big Train on the road 3-2

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BETHESDA — The Rockville Express (10-19) staged a road upset of the Bethesda Big Train (22-8), 3-2, in the Cal Ripken Collegiate Baseball League game at Shirley Povich Field on Saturday evening.

“Everybody played very well tonight and our starting pitcher shut them down for six innings…he didn’t give up much,” said Express head coach Rick Price.

The Express’ sophomore starting pitcher Mike Yasenka dominated early on, pitching six innings and allowing only one run during his time on the mound.

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Dodgers defeat Express prior to All-Star break

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ROCKVILLE—The Rockville Express (10-19, fifth in North) were looking for some luck and appeared to have it by the ninth inning. That is until the Baltimore Dodgers (12-17, third in North) went on a five-run rally in the ninth to defeat the Express 7-6 Sunday night at Raptors Field at Montgomery College.

The game was scoreless for the first three innings due to solid pitching by Baltimore’s Eli Ginsburg and Rockville’s Anthony Hernandez. Hernandez would go six innings, strike out four batters, and allow only one hit and one run.

Ginsburg, on the other hand, didn’t have that same touch when the bottom of the fourth inning came. The Express would get on the board first when outfielder Justin Smith scored an unearned run due to Dodgers catcher Colin Burgh dropping the ball at home plate. Then, third baseman hit a sac fly which allowed shortstop Billy Lennox to head home. That followed with an RBI single by catcher Jacob Barnwell to drive in outfielder/pitcher Dakota McFadden. Rockville took a 3-0 lead.

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South takes Cal Ripken League All-Star game

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MPI CalRipAllStar 0034Baltimore Red Birds' Drew Blakely (8) hits a high flyer. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER    BETHESDA—North and South division players took part in the 2017 Cal Ripken League AllStar Game Monday night at Shirley Povich Field. While there wasn’t much scoring due to dominant pitching and baserunners getting caught stealing, the South would still end up with the 3-0 shutout.

The first score of the game came in the bottom of the third inning when, with the bases loaded, Alexandria Aces infielder Max Schuemann hit a sac fly to right field and scored Bethesda Big Train infielder Vinny Esposito to give the South a 1-0 lead.

The game remained 1-0 until the bottom of the ninth when the South added two more runs. Big Train outfielder Kirk Sidwell jacked one to right center field for a home run, and then, with the bases loaded, Bethesda designated hitter/pitcher Kevin Milam hit an RBI single to drive in Loudoun Riverdogs infielder Pete Nielsen.

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Giants sneak past Thunderbolts in fourth match-up of the season

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GAITHERSBURG  -- After losing the first three games against Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts (10-16), the Gaithersburg Giants (15-13) beat their divisional rivals 5-4 Saturday night.

The game at Criswell Automotive Field remained close throughout.

Silver Spring-Takoma outfielder Brett Leftridge hit a leadoff home run in the first inning to put the Thunderbolts on top, 1-0. Then outfielder Garrett Stonehouse hit an RBI double to score first baseman Jimmy Cain, taking the score to 2-0.

In the bottom of the second, however, the Giants would answer when second baseman Jordan Westburg doubled to drive in a run scored by third baseman Christian Torres, followed by catcher Trey Martinez grounding out on a 6-3  put out, as first baseman Steven Williams headed home to tie the game at 2-2.

Neither team would break the tie until the bottom of the sixth. With Gaithersburg’s designated hitter Christian Kuzemka at the plate, Steven Williams would score the go-ahead run on a wild pitch by Thunderbolts pitcher Yuhe-Lin Lee to give his team a commanding 3-2 lead. Then outfielder Daniel Cabrera would hit a two-RBI double to left field to drive in Westburg and outfielder Trace Bucey and extend the Giants’ lead to 5-2.

“We needed this win,” Cabrera said. “I think we’ve lost to this team every time this year, and we needed to beat them and do everything we can to get in first place in our division.”

 In the top of the seventh, outfielder Richie Schiekofer doubled to left field to drive in catcher Benito Santiago and cut the deficit to 5-3. Then, third baseman Jimmy Cain hit an RBI single to send Schiekofer home, nearly catching the team up with the Giants.

On the next at-bat, with runners on first and second, Stonehouse had a chance to tie the game with a base hit, but he ended up hitting a fly out to right field, and the Thunderbolts failed to score the last two innings.

“When you play a good team, you gotta play ball,” T-Bolts manager Doug Remer said. “And still, we had too many strikeouts tonight. We put the ball in play and made things happen, but the pop-ups and the strikeouts, we’re not gonna win games if we do that.”

For the Giants, Cabrera was solid at the plate, going 2-for-4 with two RBI and a batting average of .360.

With the win, Gaithersburg improves to 16-13 on the season, while Silver-Spring Takoma falls to 10-17.

 

@hslichtman

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Big Train proves to be Giant Killers 15-3

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BETHESDA – On Saturday, the Bethesda Big Train used its strong batting to beat the Gaithersburg Giants at Shirley Povich Field, 15-3.

At first, it was the Giants who looked as if they would be the team to dominate the game. On the first pitch at the top of the first inning, outfielder Daniel Cabrera hit a leadoff home run to left field to put Gaithersburg up, 1-0.

Then it was the Big Train’s turn. With the bases loaded, pitcher Truman Thomas walked outfielder James Outman, which allowed outfielder Zach Jancarski, the walk-off hero from the previous night, to score. Then third baseman Luke Heyer hit a sacrifice fly to center field to drive in a run by shortstop Fox Semones and give the Big Train a commanding 2-1 lead.

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Big Train outlast Thunderbolts, 4-3

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BETHESDA — Bethesda Big Train outfielder Zach Jancarski came through in the bottom of the 10th inning with a walk-off RBI single to lift the Big Train (16-6) to a 4-3 victory against the Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts (8-15) at Shirley Povich Field Friday.

At the top of the first inning, Thunderbolts outfielder Brodie Leftridge hit a leadoff single and stole second and third bases. Then third baseman Carl Colbert hit a sac fly to right field to score Leftridge, giving the Thunderbolts a 1-0 lead.

But Bethesda responded with some scoring of their own. At the bottom of the first inning, infielder Kevin Milam doubled to drive in Jacob Koos, who had hit a leadoff triple. Then, outfielder James Outman drove Milam home with an RBI single, earning the Big Train a 2-1 lead.

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Baltimore Dodgers dominate Thunderbolts 13-4

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1005 20170626 Dodgers vs TboltsSecond baseman Patrick Burke for the T-Bolts gets the toss a moment too late as Brian Tagoe of the Dodgers slides into second base. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  SILVER SPRING — The Baltimore Dodgers dominated the Silver Spring-Takoma Thunderbolts with a resounding 13-4 victory, with a late rally by the home team preventing a blowout.

The Thunderbolts never had the lead, and were always distant from catching up. A few opportunities came up for the Thunderbolts to come back, but even then it was a long shot.

On the other hand, the Dodgers’ defense made quick work of the Thunderbolts’ offense, forcing short innings and fostering frustration.

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