MILTON-FREEWATER - The Mac-Hi Pioneers baseball team was beaten, 24-4 and 11-1, in 10-run mercy-rule-shortened games here Friday afternoon versus the Baker Bulldogs in both teams' Greater Oregon League conference openers.
The score was close through the first two innings of game one. It was 7-4 Baker when the Bulldogs exploded for 11 runs in the third inning to bury Mac-Hi.
The Pioneers scored three runs in the first inning on a two-out rally, with four consecutive singles by Ryley Croghan, Nick Watts, Lupito Salazar and Patrick Sheets. The rally was helped by a Baker wild pitch and Mac-Hi runners advancing on plays at the plate.
"We started off well," Mac-Hi coach Craig Angell said. "I knew the boys were ready to play. We have been starting off well, real aggressive in all our games and it is good to see.
"Baker is a good ball club, though, and they capitalized on our mistakes in the field. We didn't bring our ‘A' game and we needed it today."
The Bulldogs scored five runs on four Mac-Hi errors, two walks and one hit in a five-run first inning.
Baker scored two runs in the second inning on a home run by starting pitcher Ty Everson and a sacrifice fly by Dekker Smith.
Everson collected four hits in the opener and pitched a complete game with no walks.
The Pioneers scored another run on an Austin Goode single and Jake Knight double to deep center in the second inning.
In the third inning, Baker scored its 11 runs on seven hits, four walks and one Mac-Hi error.
The Pioneers never recovered and the Bulldogs scored six more in the fifth, when the game was shortened by the mercy rule.
Game two was a pitchers' duel until the fifth inning. Mac-Hi starter Randy Romero struck out eight through four innings, giving up two runs. The score was 2-1 as Mac-Hi scratched out a run in the third inning on a Croghan infield hit, Watts single and an RBI single by Salazar.
Romero was then touched up for five runs in the fifth on four hits, a Mac-Hi error and a base on balls.
"Romero dominated early in the game," Angell said. "Then fatigue set in at 75-80 pitches and they hit him. I should have given them a different look with a different pitcher, with varying speed and off-speed stuff earlier. I could have brought in Salazar earlier, who finished out the game well."
Salazar entered the game in the sixth with the score 11-1, and got two outs.
Mac-Hi threatened in the sixth with runners on second and third with one out before Baker completed an inning-ending, ground ball double play.
The Pioneers' record is now 6-3 overall and 0-2 in league, and they host another league doubleheader at 2 p.m. Saturday against Ontario.
Baker 52(11) 06 - 24 15 2
Mac-Hi 310 00 - 4 6 4
Everson and Gorrell. Croghan, Sheets (3), Knight (5) and McCoy, Croghan (3).
HR - Baker: Everson
Hits - Baker: De. Blankenship 2, Everson 4, Talbot 3, Lay 2, Durflinger, Richardson, Brown, Gorrell. Mac-Hi: Watts 2, Croghan, Salazar, Sheets, Goode.
Baker 101 054 - 11 11 2
Mac-Hi 001 000 - 1 4 3
Barr, De. Blankenship (6) and Gorrell. Romero, Salazar (6) and Croghan.
HR - none.
Hits - Baker: Everson 3, De. Blankenship 3, Talbot, Durflinger, Smith 2, Gorrell. Mac-Hi: Paez, Croghan, Watts, Salazar.