ARCATA (July 15) — Looks like a trend is developing here. And that ain't a bad thing.
This weekend, for the third consecutive series in Far West League play, the Crabs dropped the series opener, then pulled off three straight wins. And with a 9-3 record over the past 12 games — all league contests — the Crabs now have a 1 1/2-game lead atop the FWL standings.
First came Top Speed Baseball, then there were the California Warriors, and most recently it was the Walnut Creek Crawdads, who won Friday night's contest 4-3, before being swept 9-2 and 6-1 in a Saturday doubleheader and then losing 6-4 in Sunday's finale.
The Crabs might have had a sweep if not for four errors on Friday that fed the Crawdads' side of the scoreboard some runs they didn't earn. But after falling behind in the opening frame of Saturday's first game, the Crabs got the adrenaline shot they needed when Sergio Sanchez reached down and clubbed a two-run freeway ball to even the score at 2.
Sanchez put the Crabs ahead 3-2 in the third with an RBI-double that might have been hit harder than the home run. Humboldt added another run in the fifth, then hung up a crooked number in the sixth, plating four runs to go up 8-2. Caleb Wood had the big blow, a bases-loaded knock that produced three runs, thanks in part to a Crawdads error.
On the mound, Chad Hodges was extremely efficient, kept his pitch count low, and went the distance to improve his perfect record to 6-0.
In the nightcap, Cullen Hendrickson and Cameron Olson homered, and Jeffrey Hendrix, Zack McCoy, and Wood each had two hits. Johnny Melero made sure the bullpen could take the entire day off, as he went all seven innings in the shorter game, scattering nine hits and allowing only an unearned run.
On Sunday, the Crawdads did all they could to break the trend, rallying with two runs in the seventh and one in the eighth. But McCoy and Hendrickson hit back-to-back two-out doubles in the home half of the inning to produce the final margin of victory.
The Crabs hit the road this week for their only trip of the year. They'll be in Klamath Falls on Wednesday and Thursday for a brief respite from league play, before continuing on to Redding to play the Colt .45s over the weekend. As was the case when the .45s came to Arcata, Sunday's game is not a league contest. The boys return home on July 24 for the final week of the regular season.