Feeley Solid in Saguaros Victory over Salina 7-3
Reid Feeley tossed five solid innings in earning his first victory of the season as the Tucson Saguaros continued their dominance of the Salina Stockade with a 7-3 victory. Chris Caffery had four hits for Tucson and drove in three. The victory was the third in a row for the Saguaros over the Stockade and the sixth out of the last eight games.
Tucson has been battling back in games this week, but not on Saturday, jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Christopher Eusay led off by blasting his second homerun of the season. Two batters later, Caffery singled and moved to second on a walk to Nathan Etheridge. After Danny Kerr walked, Marcus Catalano drew a walk, driving home Caffery with the second run of the inning.
Salina got one of those runs back in the top of the second. Back-to-back singles by Drew Schutt and Jose Tejeda put runners at the corners with no one out. Two batters later, Jordan Dicks hit into a fielder’s choice, plating Schutt.
The one run lead held until the fourth when Tucson would extend their lead to two. Kerr led off with a walk and moved to third on a double by Catalano. A ground out forced both runners to hold, but Gary Mason followed with a single that drove home Kerr to give the Saguaros a 3-1 advantage.
As they had the prior time Tucson scored, Salina responded right away. In the top of the fifth, Aaron Takacs led off with a single and moved to second on a walk. Keaven Diaz then grounded to second. The second baseman had a great opportunity for a double play, but his throw was wild, allowing Takacs to come around to score.
In the sixth, the Saguaros restored the two run lead. An error by the third baseman allowed Eusay to reach. He moved to third on a ground out and scored on a base hit by Caffery.
As in the prior two instances, Salina scored right away. In the top of the seventh, Takacs led off with a base hit, stole second, and reached third on a single by Diaz. He came home on a Hudson Bilodeau single to center, but the Stockade were kept from turning this into a bigger inning when Diaz was thrown out trying to reach third.
This time it would be Tucson that would respond right away, scoring a run of the bottom of the seventh. James Prockish was hit by a pitch to start the inning. He moved to second on a single by Catalano and scored when Mason singled up the middle.
Salina would not respond in the top of the eighth, but the Saguaros would put two more on the board in the bottom half of the inning. After Tyler Baumann walked to start the inning, Caffery drilled his second homerun of the season to put Tucson on top, 7-3. That would be the final.
Caffery finished 4-5 with a homer, two runs, and three RBI. Mason and Catalano each had two hits for the Saguaros as well.
Feeley earned the victory, allowing five hits, five walks, and two earned runs in five innings pitched. He struck out four. The Tucson bullpen did the rest. Eli Straw came on in the sixth, allowed three hits and a run in two innings of work. Jay Causey then tossed a scoreless frame, as did Martin Alcoverde.
Tommy Giunta pitched well for Salina, allowing eight hits and seven walks to go along with three earned runs in 6.2 innings. He struck out four. Takacs had two hits and scored two runs for the Stockade.
By Robert Pannier