By Kyle Edwards
The Ryerson baseball team dropped both games — 8-3 and 12-4 — to the Brock Badgers in double-header action at Howard Talbot Park.
The Rams (1-9) wanted to prove they could compete with the best in the OUA and on Saturday that was the Badgers (11-1). But the same flaw in their game that they’ve been trying to shake all season, being unable to bring home runners in scoring in position, cost them against Brock.
The Rams racked up more hits than the Badgers in both games. After the games, manager Ben Rich noted the frustration that comes with being unable to capitalize on their chances.
“I mean, you have a couple games against the top team or one of the top teams, and you’re in them, and you let it get away because somebody made a base running mistake or somebody made an error… It definitely wears on you,” Rich said. “We had many opportunities and we either struck out or didn’t put a ball in play or didn’t put the pressure on the other team.”
It was all Badgers in the first game, as their starting pitcher put up nothing but zeros on the scoreboard until the eighth inning to go along with their hot offence.
In the top of the eighth, with Brock up 4-0 and the bases loaded for the Badgers, Phil Steer slapped a hard shot to left field that would score two. They added two more to end the inning up 8-0.
The Rams finally got on the board in the bottom of the eighth, adding two of their own. And then in the ninth, with one out, Mark Tari launched his first home run of the season to end the first game 8-3.
“I wasn’t really happy with [my start], obviously because I gave up five runs, I want[ed] more out of myself,” said Ryerson starting pitcher Kevin MacDonald, who hurled seven innings while striking out two, but ultimately picked up the loss. “In the end it was a good enough start, it kept us in the game, but I could’ve done more.”
The Rams kept the late momentum going in the second game — which was only seven innings — opening the scoring with a single run in the second inning. But the Badgers quickly tied things up in the third.
The momentum switched often in game two, as both teams piled up errors and hits. From the third inning, the Rams loaded the bases in three consecutive innings but failed to come away with more than one run.
In the sixth, the Badgers came out with a burst of offence, after a series of hits, and a crucial error from the Rams second baseman, added four on the board.
Then in seventh with the bases loaded, Badgers’ Blake Stepien sealed the win for his team with a gland slam to right field to make it 12-4.
“When we made errors they made it hurt,” Rich said. “The coaches aren’t going to win the game, the players are. So that’s kind of something they’ve got to grab themselves and take it.”
The Ryerson baseball team next plays on Sunday at home against Queen’s.