There’s one very important baseball stat that tells the story of Friday afternoon’s baseball game between Jamestown and Poquoson.
The Eagles committed a season high 11 errors in the field before suffering a 6-3 loss to the visiting Islanders, ending the five-game win streak that lifted them into a three-way tie for third in the BRD standings.
“It was just one of those days,” Jamestown coach Mike Kuebler said after the game. “We caught the error bug and it was contagious. It happens. Unfortunately it happened today.”
Fielding woes had Jamestown starter J.T. Castner (6 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 2 ER) laboring through all six of the innings he pitched. Only two of the five runs Castner allowed were earned, yet the Eagles found themselves in a four-run hole (5-1) by the time he figured out of the decision.
“You’ve got to tip your hat to J.T. However many errors we had in the first few innings, he kept getting them to roll over and hit weak ground balls,” Kuebler said. “I guess that’s a positive thing to take away from it.”
The Eagles (7-6, 7-5 BRD) jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning after Griffin Colorado’s base hit to left field scored Tim Geiling, who led off with a double.
Poquoson (10-4, 8-4 BRD) got it back, however, in the top of the second after the first three batters of the inning reached on errors. Dylan Hill scored the run after James Laycock over threw Geiling at first, allowing all runners to advance.
The fourth inning was the killer for Jamestown.
After Castner retired the first two batters, Justin Smith and Evan Lemon both singled back-to-back. With runners on first and second, Marshall-bound Tee McConnell ripped a base hit to right field scoring Smith, but the ball went right through the right fielder’s legs, allowing Lemon to cross home and McConnell to advance all the way to thirdl. Chase Pinder then singled in McConnell to put the Islanders ahead 4-1.
“They’re physical errors, but I think it was mostly mental mistakes,” Kuebler said. “What our approach was out there is what I’m going to try and figure out.”
The Eagles never recovered.
Jamestown had a big opportunity in the fifth down 5-1 with the bases loaded, but caught a tough break when Brink Ambler’s bomb to right-center fell just short of a game-tying grand slam.
Castner gave up one more run over the next two innings before Matt Smith came on to pitch the seventh inning for Jamestown.
The Islanders’ Matt Cawley reached on an error to lead off the inning, then advanced to third on another error, and later scored on a passed ball stretching Poquoson’s lead to 6-1.
While Jamestown’s miscues defensively highlighted the afternoon, Poquoson’s Matt Jensen (5.1 IP, 6 H, I R) had another strong outing on the mound to earn the victory.
“This was his third quality start in a row,” said Islander head coach Ken Bennett after the game. “But it was his first big game, and I think he handled it well. If he continues to progress, he can really help us a lot.”
The Eagles will have to rebound quickly as they have another critical matchup Tuesday against Grafton.
“We can beat anyone,” Kuebler added. “It’s nothing I’m too worried about, but it’s definitely something that needs to be addressed.”
Poquoson 6 Jamestown 3
Poquoson 010; 310; 0 – 6 6
Jamestown 100; 000; 2 – 3 7 11
Poquoson- McConnell 1-4 (RBI, run), Cawley 0-4 (2 runs), Jensen 1-3 (run, 6 IP, 6 H, I run, 2 SO)
Jamestown- Geiling 2-4 (2B, run), Shannon 1-3 (RBI), Vitaletti 0-4 (run)