Unstoppable Sox win once again
Ryan Zaft earned a permanent spot on the Yuba-Sutter roster early this summer, and Saturday night he proved again why he deserved it.
Zaft (1-1) allowed one hit and no runs in six innings of work to earn his first win of the season, and the Gold Sox (14-1, 11-1) completed a three-game Horizon Air Summer Series sweep of the San Diego Stars with a 5-0 win at All Seasons RV Stadium.
The victory also extends Yuba-Sutter's record win streak to 12.
Despite being the only pitcher to record a loss, Zaft has been pitching as well as anyone on the Gold Sox's staff.
He is one of eight pitchers carrying a perfect 0.00 ERA. He was the tough-luck loser on May 27 when he allowed one unearned run in a 1-0 loss to the Seaside Wildcats, the Gold Sox only loss so far this season.
“All our guys are in the strike zone, and they're all pitching 86 (miles per hour) or better,” said Yuba-Sutter manager Brad Peek. “The guys who struggled this spring in college ball are pitching with a ton of confidence. It's a good feeling right now.”
Zaft faced two over the minimum. He hit batters in the first and fifth innings, and San Diego's Jeff Woods smacked a single to left in the sixth but was thrown out trying to stretch the hit into a double.
Zaft struck out two and walked none.
Josh Roberts came on in the seventh and pitched three shutout innings to close out the game for his team-leading fifth save. He allowed one hit, struck out six, walked one and hit one.
San Diego starter Scott Deen gave the Gold Sox their first run in the third inning, twice throwing the ball away trying to pick off Jonny Norfolk, once at first and then again at second.
Etienne Materre singled him home with two outs for the 1-0 Yuba-Sutter lead.
Four hits and two hit batsmen in the fourth led to four Gold Sox runs, and Yuba-Sutter then rode its stellar pitching to the win.
No Gold Sox hitter had more than one hit. A.J. Valentine had a double, and Materre had a single and two RBIs. Jonathan Dees, Matt Suleski, Norfolk and Matt Edgecombe each added a single. Dees also stole a base.
San Diego committed three errors in the game. Yuba-Sutter committed none. Deen was the losing pitcher.
“Errorless baseball and excellent pitching. That'll win you a lot of ballgames,” Peek said.