Sox throw back Mudcats
The Gold Sox donned baggy dark blue and gold uniforms for a throwback night on Saturday.
While Vince DeCoito's undershirt was soaked from the heavy material, he may be interested in packing his uniform up when he heads back to UC Davis in the fall.
DeCoito pitched into the eighth inning, and the Gold Sox blanked the Solano Mudcats 5-0 in a nonleague game in Marysville on Saturday night.
Yuba-Sutter (38-15), which has won the first two games of the series, concludes the 2004 season today.
DeCoito (3-2) scattered four hits (three infield singles), did not walk anyone and struck out five in 72/3 innings.
“Vince had a really great two-seamer working,” said catcher Ricky Bambino. “He was working every pitch in and out, and he really got the job done. I'm glad I got a chance to catch him tonight.”
A festive reported crowd of 2,015 was on hand for Soper-Wheeler's turn-back-the-clock theme, in which both teams featured old-style uniforms and even umpires Bryan Rose and Jim Richins donned early 20th century garb.
Gold Sox players wore uniforms similar to the Hub City Merchants from 1908. Pregame events also included players demonstrating a game of “Shadow Ball,” a tradition of the Negro Leagues where players act out a game of infield without a ball.
Assistant coach Jack Johnson trotted around the bases like Babe Ruth before the game, and manager Brad Peek waxed his mustache to help complete the look.
A Beale Air Force Base flyover also helped highlight pregame festivities, and DeCoito similarly blazed through the Mudcats' lineup.
Leading only 1-0, Yuba-Sutter found the cushion it was looking for in the sixth inning.
Buddy Morales and A.J. Valentine each singled to lead off the inning to put runners at first and third.
After one out, catcher Ricky Bambino executed a suicide squeeze with Morales scoring from third. Losing pitcher Pedro Santiago made a quick snap throw home, but Morales eluded catcher Justin Jacques' tag.
“That was pretty surprising, considering there were two catchers involved in it,” DeCoito said.
Added Bambino, “I've never done that. It was good though. It helped take the pressure off me.”
Solano manager Shawn Scibek went to reliever Mike Louthian, who walked
Mark Steinbeck to load the bases. He induced Frank Jeney to pop up, but R.C. Dickerson lined a double to left-center to score Valentine and Bambino.
Left fielder Cameron Shick made it 5-0 in the seventh when he exploded on a 3 and 1 pitch from Louthian and deposited it over the white Appeal-Democrat sign in right field. It was Shick's second homer of the season.
The Gold Sox scored their first run in the third inning as Jeney singled, moved to second on Dickerson's groundout and scored on Brennan Garr's single to left.
Solano's biggest threat came in the fourth after Steve Keeler reached on a bad-hop single to begin the inning. With one out, Da'Ronte Hollins bunted for a hit, and Jacques tapped a slow roller to the middle. Shortstop Mark Steinbeck made an errant throw to second as all three runners were safe.
However, DeCoito induced a ground ball from Brad Indelicato for the double play, and Yuba-Sutter escaped.
Kyle Maunus came on with two outs in the eighth and worked the final 11/3 innings. Maunus has not allowed a run in 201/3 innings this season.
Notes: Blake Knabenshue (6-4, 2.65) will start the 2004 season finale today for Fan Appreciation Night ... Indelicato, a Yuba City High graduate, started at third base for the Mudcats and was 1-for-4 ... Keeping with the theme, the Gold Sox honored a number of “local legends” between innings. Many of them played at the same field for a number of semipro teams in the area.
Appeal-Democrat assistant sports editor Matt O'Donnell can be reached at 749-4796. You may e-mail him at email@example.com.