Hillsboro Hops Five Errors Aid Boise Hawk in 5-1 Loss
The Boise Hawks came to town and handed the Hillsboro Hops a 5-1 defeat. At first, the reasons for the loss seem undefinable. Both teams appeared to be close in performance. The Hawks had six hits to the Hops four. Boise had only three more plate appearances than Hillsboro. So, what could explain the decisive victory?
The one category with just as big a difference as the final score is errors. The Hops committed five errors to the Hawks error-free game. Four of those errors came in the same inning. The one inning where the Hawks started to explode on the scoreboard.
It seemed the entire team had the yips that inning. Missed throws and bobbled catches helped runners reach base or advance towards home.
The second inning started out with a groundout and Daniel Jipping earning a walk. What followed next was head-scratching. Danny Edgeworth singled to right as right fielder Bryan Araiza had trouble coming up with the bouncing ball allowing Jipping to scoot over to third from first.
Before the next batter reached base, pitcher Tyler Keele attempted to pick off Danny Edgeworth at first. The throw bounced in the dirt and Yipping came home for the game’s first score. Aubrey McCarty was hit by a pitch. Maybe not an error by definition, but it fit in with the rest of the inning. Shortstop Camden Duzenack couldn’t get a handle on Sam Tidabeck’s grounder. Edgeworth scored. First baseman Paxton De La Garza tried valiantly to handle Cole Anderson’s grounder but his flip to pitcher Keele couldn’t connect. Matt McLaughlin mercifully ended the inning by striking out.
Surprisingly, out of that only two Boise runs crossed the plate. It would double the next inning in a more traditional way with a little help from the Hops.
In the third and with two outs, Daniel Jipping smacked a hard grounder to shortstop Camden Duzenack and the shortstop couldn’t come up with a handle for the Hops fifth error. Danny Edgeworth came to the plate and sent a hard-hit ball over the right field fence with Yipping on board. After what should have been a scoreless game turned out to be a 4-0 deficit. The rest of the game, the Hops showed some fine defensive work including a double play combining a strike out with a baserunner caught stealing.
The only earned run for the Hawks came in the seventh. Cole Anderson started the inning with a walk and stole second. Anderson moved over to third on Matt McLaughlin’s grounder to second. Brett Boswell’s single scored Anderson in legitimate fashion.
Breiling Eusebio started for the Hawks and went a masterful seven innings allowing only one hit, leaving the game with a 5-0 lead. It was that pitching change that allowed the Hops to wake up in the eighth.
With one out, Connor Owings rifled a shot to right to get on base. Camden Duzenack’s double to left put both runners in scoring position. Owings came home on Billy Endris’ grounder to second.
Before that inning, the Hops only hit came in the first when Bryan Araiza singled a hot grounder to first baseman Connor Hale and beat the throw. The only Hops hit after the eighth inning scoring was Yan Sanchez’s line drive double down the third base line in the ninth. Both runners were left stranded on base.
Breiling Eusebio’s (W, 2-0) eight-strike outs helped him control the Hops for the win. Despite not allowing one earned run and striking out nine batters, Hops starting pitcher Tyler Keele (L, 1-1) was credited with four unearned runs at the end of his five-inning stint and was saddled with the loss.
Danny Edgeworth led the Hawks bats with a two-RBI home run and went 2 for 4. Daniel Yipping and Edgeworth managed to score two runs each. Four Hops batters hit safely during the game including two doubles by Yan Sanchez and Camden Duzenack.
The loss dropped the Hillsboro Hops (4-5) into a second-place tie with the Eugene Emeralds, one game behind the Boise Hawks (5-4) in the tightly contested division. Both teams return Saturday night for the second game in the three-game series. Boise leads it 1-0.
Both games this weekend have been pushed back in start time due to the expected heatwave. Saturday’s game will start at 7:05pm and Sunday’s will start at 6pm. Ron Tonkin Field will furnish what they call “misters” to help the crowd stay cool.
Hops notes: two more players have been assigned to the Hops, both right-handed pitchers. Matt Peacock was taken in the 23rd round of the 2017 draft out of South Alabama college. Luis Castillo, out of the Dominican Republic, was promoted from the Missoula Osprey. To make room, RHP Cody Clark was promoted to the Kane County Cougars.
By Greg Stoker