American Legion League
By Brad Greer
Bailey Lawrence collected four hits and knocked in three runs to help guide the Red Sox to a 9-6 victory over the A’s Monday night in opening round play of the 13-15 year-old American Legion tournament.
The Sox faced off against the Royals in the winners’ bracket game last night while the A’s were knocked into the losers’ bracket contest against the Yankees, who dropped a 13-2 verdict to the Royals in the first game. The championship game will be played Monday night at 7:30.
The A’s got off to a sizzling start in top of the first scoring three runs off Sox starting pitcher Blake Snyder. Will Dickins led off the game with a walk while Andy Linder followed with a bunt single.
After Jesse Pearson reached on one of two errors in the inning, Linder scored on a Deon Mix groundout. Two batters later, a Scotty Daughtery RBI (run batted in) groundout to short, chased home Pearson.
The lead was short-lived however as the white erupted for seven runs in the top of the second to take a 7-3 lead.
Bryan Byford, Calvin Hawkins and Lawrence produced two-out RBI singles to fuel the rally. The A’s cut the lead to 7-5 in the bottom half of the frame on Pearson’s two-run single that scored Austin Epps and Dickins. The A’s loaded the bases later in the inning but Sox relief pitcher Renic Greenlee enticed Daughtery to fly out to end the inning.
The Sox added a pair of insurance runs in the top of the fourth to take a 9-5 advantage. Lawrence drove in the first run with a bunt single to drive in Byford. Hawkins later scored on a groundout by Greenlee for the final run.
Greenlee picked up the win in relief by going 3.1 innings, fanning three while not surrendering any runs or hits. James Wilder pitched the final inning to record the save. Pearson took the loss for the A’s by going four innings before being replaced by Dickins. Wilder registered a single for the White Sox.
In the opening game, the Royals scored in every inning in route to the easy victory. The game was called after five innings due to the 10-run mercy rule.
Second basemen Tyler Beard and Hunter Ivy led the Royals offensively with two singles while scoring a pair of runs. Corinzo Towns and J.J. Kilpatrick each drove in two RBIs as the Royals scored four runs in the second and fourth innings. Billy Lightning and outfielder Tyler Beard added RBI singles while Lane Massey chipped in with a single.
Taylor Karr picked up the pitching victory by going three innings while Massey hurled the final two innings. Karr gave up one run on two hits while walking one and striking out one. Massey meanwhile fanned three while surrendering two hits and one run.
Luke Latham carried the load for the Yankees by registering three of their four hits including a solo homerun in the bottom of the first. Latham also had a double and single in the game. Cameron Brown had the Yanks’ other hit with a fourth- inning single.
Erik Weaver took the loss on the mound. Scott Taylor worked 1.2 innings in relief of Weaver.