By Kevin Wyart
Humboldt Crabs Baseball
July 9, 2016
ARCATA —With the Crabs spending the four games lighting up the scoreboard, it was the pitching that shined brightest as the Crabs held off the Walnut Creek Crawdads 2-1 Saturday Night at the Arcata Ball Park. Aaron Herr turned in a masterful performance going six innings and only allowing one run on six hits, with four strikeouts and a walk for the win.
“I really liked how I threw my curveball,” Herr said. “I’ve been working on turning that into an effective pitch.”
The Sacramento native also boasted an effective fastball and slider, pitches he’ll need to execute with as he transfers from Sierra Community College up to the NCAA Division I level.
“I’ll be transferring to St. Johns University in New York,” he said. “It’ll be interesting with the cold weather as I’ve never played in the snow before.”
The Crabs bullpen turned in yet another shutdown performance as Kyle Smith, Justin Watland and Austin Ragsdale each pitched a scoreless inning in relief, with Ragsdale picking up the save.
The Crabs would score a run in both the second and third innings for their only offense of the night, but with Herr’s performance, that was all they needed. Jayson Newman led off the second with a walk and showed heads-up base running advancing from first to third on Michael Perri’s single, a ball that ate Crawdads player Connor Casperson alive at second base and skipped into right-center.
That allowed him to score on a groundout to short by David Hamilton and the Crabs took a 1-0 lead. They would get their second run in the third when Mason Cerrillo started the inning with a double and David Hamilton followed with a single that sent Cerrillo to third. Brian Pozos then hit a scoring fly ball to center field to give the Crabs a 2-0 advantage.
The Crabs pitching staff was able to make that lead stand, as they only allowed the Crawdads to score in the fifth. With two outs, Mickey Nunes hit a double, then was singled home by Casperson, who took second on the throw. With the tying run at second base and two out, Aaron Herr bore down and struck out Alex Tsuruda to end the threat.
Herr showed even more poise in the sixth inning. After a hit batter and a single put runners at first and third, catcher Logan Denholm picked off Trevor Greenley form first base, caused Michael Lagier to pop out foul to first base, and after a walk to load the bases, struck out Vincent Volpatti to put out the fire.
The Crawdads had one more chance to tie the game in the ninth. With two outs, Turner Lace hit a ball off the glove of Pozos followed by a single by Nunes to put the tying run in scoring position. Ragsdale then sealed the game by striking out Casperson to end it.
For his part, Crawdads started David Rajeski turned in a solid performance in defeat. He went five innings and gave up only two runs on three hits with four strikeouts and three walks. Sam Carter pitched three scoreless innings in relief with only one hit against him.
Both these teams will conclude their three game series Sunday afternoon, with a 12:30pm first pitch. The Crabs will be celebrating founder Lou Bonomini’s 100th birthday as part of the day’s festivities. Gates open at 11:30am and kids are invited to run the bases after the game.
Bigfoot vs Crusty the Crab mascot race, click here.
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