Thursday, July 05, 2007

Season Ending Doubleheader

I never recapped last Saturday’s doubleheader. In the first game the Titans only got two hits, but Will hit it hard each time up. In the first he hit a line drive that was slicing away from the rightfielder, but he made a nice running catch. Will singled through the hole into left field in the third, driving in the only run the Titans scored in game one. In the sixth Will hit a hard grounder that took a Sunday hop right into the third-baseman’s glove.

Will played shortstop the first three innings and made several good plays. In the first the pitcher’s pickoff throw sailed past the first-baseman, and the runner rounded second and his loud-mouthed third-base coach waved him on to third. The first baseman ran down the ball and threw to Will, who relayed the ball to third in plenty of time to nail the runner. In the second he fielded a grounder and threw out the batter at first.

In the third the pitcher caught a runner off third base and got him in a rundown. As usual, Will’s teammates were content in throwing the ball back and forth. Most often when this happens the ball is eventually dropped. As in this case, only when Will gets the ball is the runner run down…Will made the tag to end the inning.

With the Titans losing 0 – 4 to a very good opponent, Will was brought in to pitch with one out in the fourth, with runners on first and second. Will got the first batter to hit into a 6-4-3 double play. He pitched two more scoreless innings, striking out two and throwing out another batter, pitcher-to-first.

The Titans woke up a little in game two, as the first three batters reached base…loading the bases for cleanup hitter Will. Will swung at the first pitch, hitting a long fly ball far over the left-fielder’s head. The fly hit the far-away fence in the air, missing a grand slam home run by a foot. All three runners scored, and later Will scored on a single.

The Titans led 4 – 2 after the first inning, but saw the lead turn into another deficit, with the two best pitchers already spent. Will walked in the third, and came up in the 5th with a runner on first. He worked the count to 3 -1, then hit another deep fly to left. The one hit the fence on the first bounce, giving Will his 4th RBI of the game and his second extra-base hit. Will scored on a wild pitch, meaning Will accounted for 7 of the 8 runs the Titans scored in the two games.

Will caught all but the last inning. In the first he threw out one base stealer at second, and another stealer looked out but was ruled safe.

Statistically, Will led the team in batting average, hits, runs scored, RBIs, times reaching base, stolen bases, slugging percentage, and on-base plus slugging percentage. Pitching, he led the team in ERA, strikeouts, wins, most strikeouts per inning, fewest walks per inning, assists, and lowest opponent’s batting average and on-base percentage.

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