Nebisawa 3-hits Trinidad in 7-0 complete game
By Karen Boehler
Pecos League writer
TRINIDAD, Colo. — A stellar pitching performance by Atsushi Nebisawa gave Las Vegas its second victory of the season Wednesday, as Nebisawa went nine full in a 7-0 shutout against Trinidad.
“We finally played a complete game,” said Train Robber manager Casey Dil. “We pitched. We played defense. Atsushi probably threw what will be the best performance of the Pecos League all year. He threw a three hitter. Had no walks, seven strikeouts. We hit the ball. Only had one error. We played a great baseball game all the way around.”
And surprisingly, Trigger manager J.D. Droddy didn’t sound too upset, except about his team’s errors.
“We hit the ball really well, and I can’t tell you how many time we hit the ball straight at somebody,” he said. “Just time after time. Line drives to shortstop. Really hard hit balls that almost went out of the park and were caught. We ended up hitting it right at people. But the story again for us was errors. We’re not going to win until we quit making errors. It’s as simple as that. And we’re a better defensive ball club than that. But we made errors.”
For four innings, there were no errors by either side and only three hits: a Matt Grosso double in the first; Adam Kam single in the second and SAm DiMatteo single in the fourth. Trigger Tony Smith was matching Nebisawa almost pitch for pitch.
But in the top of the fifth, that run came to an end.
Ricky Brown opened the stanza with a single and advanced to second on an error. Two outs later, Nebisawa helped his own cause with an RBI triple and Grosso followed that with an RBI double. Randy Wells followed that with a single, and that was all Las Vegas needed. But they kept adding runs through the rest of the game.
“We kept on plugging on,” Dill said. “The thing about the Pecos League is there’s no lead that’s ever safe. So our hitters are going up there to hit the ball, get on base and continue to score runs. Because of some of the experiences we had earlier in the year losing big leads, we’re playing nine innings, and we’re looking at scoring runs regardless (of the score.)”
Kam homered in the sixth and Grosso homered in the seventh off James Coon, who threw his first pitches this season because of an injury.
In the eighth, Matt Mullen came in and gave up a Chris Wilson double and Kam single with Wilson scoring on a fielder’s choice. Four Trinidad errors in the top of the ninth contributed to the final Train Robber run.
DiMatteo got two of the three hits off Nebisawa, doubling in the seventh with Benji Waite getting a single in the ninth.
Still, Droddy wasn’t too unhappy.
“I talked to the team afterwards. We made some bad base running decisions and we made errors. I’ve got really no complaints about the hitting, even though we didn’t get very many hits. You hit it really hard, and you hit it right where you hit it, there’s just nothing you can do about it. You have those days.”
Dill never went to his bench, getting hits from all but one of his starters, led by Grosso (5-for-3, three runs, 2 RBI) and Kam (5-for-3, one run and RBI.)
The Triggers now head south to Alamogordo, and Droddy said his team is ready for the Pupfish.
“We lost two in a row and we’re going into White Sands and going to try to bring that to a halt,” he said. “But Las Vegas is a much better ball club than an 0-5 start looks. THey made some fantastic plays and have great hitters. They have really good hitters. They hit our pitching pretty well.”
Las Vegas heads back north, this time to Raton.
“Another interdivision series,” Dill said. “Four big games. If we can get a sweep we’ll get over the .500 mark and probably be in the top two in our division. Being that this is a four-game series and an inter-division series it’s a very big series for us. Right now we’re coming off two great wins where we played great baseball for nine innings from top to bottom in all facets of the game, and we’re very confident right now and we’ve got a lot of momentum going in our favor.”
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