Yuba-Sutter skins Mudcats
08/06/05 - Jonny Norfolk and Billy Krause aren't usually major offensive weapons for the Gold Sox.
The two came into Friday night's game against the Solano Mudcats with a combined .169 batting average.
But the eighth and ninth batters in Yuba-Sutter's lineup exploded for six hits and four RBIs to lift the Gold Sox to a 6-1 win against the visiting Mudcats Friday at All Seasons RV Stadium in Marysville.
“Those guys have had tough summers in terms of averages,” said Yuba-Sutter manager Brad Peek. “Both of them have made strides as hitters and it's nice to see the fruits of their labor pay off.”
Norfolk went 3-for-4 with a double and two RBIs; Krause also had two RBIs and went 3-for-3 with a double and a walk.
Gold Sox starter Kyle Hill allowed a run in the first inning, but was unhittable after that, retiring the final 14 batters in his final appearance this summer. He struck out five, hit one batter, but didn't allow a walk in 5 1/3 innings to preserve his perfect 7-0 record.
“He's got to be the first ever full-time starter who's pitched from the beginning of the season and finished undefeated,” said Peek.
Solano's C.J. Mills got on to lead off the game after a Hill fastball brushed his leg. He stole second and scored on a Pedro Santiago single to give the Mudcats the early lead.
Norfolk's second-inning double scored Cole Koester from second to pull the Gold Sox even and a Billy Sinacori sacrifice fly brought home Jesse Rodgers in the third to give Yuba-Sutter a lead it would never surrender.
Matt Vance tacked on an insurance run in the sixth before Gold Sox scored three in the seventh to break the game open.
Doug Thennis started the rally with a double that short-hopped the right-field wall. Sinacori walked and Koester dropped a beautiful drag bunt for a hit to load the bases with nobody out.
Matt Suleski struck out, but Norfolk and Krause followed with a single and a double to score three runs and put runners on second and third with just the one out.
Krause got hung up between third and home in a rundown on a Vance grounder to third for the second out, and Rodgers popped out to short to end the inning.
The Gold Sox finished the game with 15 hits and held Solano to just four. Every Gold Sox hitter except Suleski had at least one hit in the game. Rodgers had two doubles while Sinacori and Koester each had two singles.
Yuba-Sutter left 11 men stranded on base, eight of them in scoring position.
“We hit the ball pretty well,” said Peek. “We probably should have scored a few more runs, but anytime you get a lot of hits, you're going to leave more guys on base, too. But 15 hits and a win, we'll take it.”
Justin Souza pitched the eighth and the ninth, the first time this season he's gone more than one inning in a game. He pitched a perfect eighth and retired the first two batters in the ninth before Santiago hit a dribbler through the right side to become the first batter to reach base against Souza.
Souza struck out Ryan Adams to end the game, his ninth in five innings since joining the Gold Sox two weeks ago.
“He's been going just one inning coming off his (shoulder) injury,” said Peek. “So this was a good chance to stretch him out to two innings and see how it responds tomorrow.”
Notes: This is the third straight year the Gold Sox have finished their collegiate season against the Mudcats. They are 8-0 against them. ... Kody Keroher will start tonight's game and former Yuba College pitcher Wes Porter will start Sunday's season finale.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Nathan Collier can be reached at 743-0512. You may e-mail him at email@example.com.