Gold Sox expose Oakland
Gold Sox starting pitcher Tony Biale continued his scoreless streak with four shutout innings on Sunday and combined with three relievers on a six-hitter as Yuba-Sutter defeated the Oakland Expos 4-1 before a reported paid crowd of 720 in Marysville.
Biale has had three surgeries, the most recent on his shoulder last December that prevented him from playing for the University of San Francisco this past season, went an inning longer Sunday than his previous two starts for the Gold Sox. He threw three scoreless innings in each of first two starts.
On Sunday, Biale gave up three hits and walked one. He didn't have any strikeouts but induced seven ground-ball outs.
“We're going to be real cautious with him, but he was feeling good so we went to four (innings) tonight,” Gold Sox manager Brad Peek said. “He actually said he felt his best in the fourth and his velocity picked up there, so that's a real good sign.”
Biale also was encouraged by the outing.
“My arm started to loosen up and I felt pretty good,” he said. “That's the plan, to keep building it (his pitch count) up. I probably could have gone five (innings) tonight, but there's no need to overdo it. I don't want to have a fourth surgery.”
Jason Maes pitched the fifth for Yuba-Sutter but was unable to start the sixth after tightening up.
Fortunately for the Gold Sox, Blake Knabenshue, who just finished his collegiate season at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, joined the Gold Sox and went right to work. Knabenshue pitched three innings of one-hit ball for the win.
“It's hard to believe he doesn't pitch in college,” Peek said of Knabenshue. “He'll pitch a lot for us (in relief) and maybe make a spot start or two when he gets in better shape.”
The Expos touched up Yuba College's Wes Porter for a pair of doubles in the ninth to break up the shutout.
Getting the leadoff man aboard keyed each of the Gold Sox's scoring innings.
In the seventh, Frank Jeney walked and moved to third when Cameron Shick doubled just inside the right-field line. Jeney scored on a sacrifice fly by Buddy Morales. Shick made it 4-0 - with plenty of help from the Expos - after a passed ball and an error.
The Gold Sox' leadoff batter also reached base and scored in the first and second innings.
Ryan Angel started the first with a single to left. The Expos had him picked off first, but a bad throw to the bag by pitcher Brian Kline allowed Angel to advance to third. Jeney's sacrifice fly to right scored Angel.
A.J. Valentine was hit by a pitch to lead off the second and took third on a hit-and-run single to left by Brennan Garr. Kyle Maunus's infield single deep in the hole at short made it 2-0.