GLENDALE — No hit for the game’s first three innings, the Glendale Angelenos certainly made up for lost time in collegiate summer league wood bat action Thursday evening.
After the visiting Montebello Stars removed starting pitcher Nick Brown before the top of the fourth, the Angelenos responded by scoring at least one run in each of their five final innings in picking up a 10-3 victory at Stengel Field.
“It was good to get out here, play some small ball and win,” Angelenos skipper Tony Riviera said. “We had some strong pitching today and delivered some key kits.”
The game marked the first action in almost a week for the Angelenos, who had two games canceled on them Tuesday and Wednesday versus the California Gold Sox and Bakersfield Braves, respectively, and hadn’t played since a 5-3 defeat to the Ventura Pirates on Friday.
The Angelenos were also short-handed, fielding an 11-player roster that included newcomer Alek Strain, as several players, according to Riviera, were out due to summer school finals.
With all those issues, Glendale came to life in the top of the fourth against Stars reliever Kevin Hindes, with the visitors holding a 1-0 lead.
The Angelenos scored all the offense they needed in one half inning, plating five runs on five hits with the benefit of an error and some overall shaky Stars defense.
With one in the fourth, center fielder Scott Hong (formerly of Glendale Community College) knotted the game after depositing a 2-2 hanging breaking ball over the right-field wall for a solo homer that easily cleared 330 feet.
The Angelenos’ following batter, right fielder John Schwer (GCC), hit a routine ball to third base that was kicked.
The error was followed by a single to right from Andre Bello (GCC), while both Bello and Schwer advanced a base on a wild pitch.
Montebello’s mistakes continued when Glendale’s subsequent batter, Strain, bunted a comebacker to Hindes, who hesitated and then fired home too late to get a sliding Schwer with the go-ahead run as Glendale led, 2-1.
Glendale’s Ryan Barbarin and Tony Iezza added to the scoring with run-scoring singles, while Sam Frakes (GCC) also chipped in a sacrifice bunt for a run as the Angelenos took an insurmountable lead.
“I thought today, of all days, we’d have an opportunity to get ahead of our opponent and score some runs to give ourselves a cushion,” Riviera said. “Don’t get me wrong, I never feel limited as long as I have nine players, but it was nice to get those runs.”
Glendale eventually extended its lead to 6-1 in the fifth when Schwer scored on an error before the Stars made their last push.
Montebello halved its deficit with two runs in the sixth on back-to-back run-scoring doubles from Nathaniel Acosta and Jordyn McMath to climb within 6-3 in the top of the sixth.
Glendale had an answer, though, as Barbarin scored on a fielding error and Reuben Padilla (GCC) swiped home on the back end of a double steal of second by teammate Dylan Trimarchi (GCC) in the bottom of the sixth as Glendale asserted itself, going up, 8-3.
The Angelenos plated two more runs, one in the seventh on a bases-loaded walk to Iezza and one final run in the eighth on a single from Bello that plated Hong.
Perhaps lost in the offensive output was a solid effort from starting pitcher Carl Daniels (GCC), who tossed 6 1/3 innings, while allowing three earned runs on six hits with seven strikeouts.
“I would have liked to have gone nine innings, but we won,” Daniels said. “I didn’t feel any pressure out there because we had only 11 players. We knew we still have enough guys to win.”