The Crabs welcomed a new opponent to the Arcata Ball Park this week, Santa Rosa-based Top Speed. But the home team seemed to take their adversaries' name as a challenge, slowing them down and sweeping the series by scores of 9-1 and 6-5.
Other than the names on the rosters and the end results however, the two games couldn't have been more different. In Tuesday's matchup, the Crabs jumped on top 4-0 after two innings, sparked by a two-run double by Bradley Zimmer in the first. Zimmer would eventually remove all doubt about the outcome, crushing a three-run homer to right in the seventh that made the score 8-1.
Kenny Smith allowed just one run on four hits in six innings to earn the win, evening his record at 1-1. Ruben Rios and Evan Ewing came in from the 'pen to close things out.
Things didn't come so easy on Wednesday. Top Speed scored once in the first and twice in the fifth to lead 3-0, while their pitcher, Jake Butler, held the Crabs to just one hit through four innings.
They finally got to Butler in the fifth, answering Top Speed's two-spot with one of their own, courtesy of two walks and a double off the wall by Will Soto.
Top Speed tried to respond, putting up another run in the sixth for a 4-2 lead, but the Crabs erased that with three runs in the bottom of the frame. The big hit in that rally was a two-run single by Riley Drongesen.
The Crabs would add an insurance run on an RBI-single by Spencer Duggan in the seventh for a 6-4 lead, but they weren't out of the woods yet. Top Speed rallied against Jason Hampton in the ninth. They scored one run, but Hampton got Rob Pena to ground out to second with the tying run on third.
Up next, the Crabs welcome the Seattle Studs in for what should be a great weekend series. Please note that due to the Oyster Festival, Saturday's game will be a 12:30 p.m. start instead of the usual 7 p.m. evening game.