Stallions fall flat against Emperors


Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune

Madera South’s Anthony Gamiz gets a fist bump from first base coach Bo Bertoncini after his pinch hit single in the fifth inning during Wednesday’s 9-1 loss to the Dinuba Emperors at Eddie Chapa Field.

After an encouraging 3-0 start to the 2020 season, the Madera South Stallions baseball team looked to bounce back from a loss last week against the Dinuba Emperors at Eddie Chapa Field.

However, the Stallions committed four errors and banged out just three hits in a 9-1 loss Wednesday in the Central Valley Diamond Classic.

“We didn’t come ready to play,” head coach Alan Sandoval said. “We had no energy. They were flat. Dinuba gave it to us. We’re hoping this is an aberration. We’ve played four good games before this. Today was the odd game out and, hopefully, that doesn’t continue to happen.”

Joel Guillen was the only starter to record a hit — a bunt single in the second. Pinch hitters Anthony Gamiz and Leo Hernandez recorded the other hits for the Stallions.

“There was no tempo what so ever until Elijah (Bertoncini) came in throwing strikes,” Sandoval said. “It was disappointing today. I know this is not what the season is going to be like, but this can’t continue to happen. We are sophomore heavy with two freshman starters. We’re going to be okay.”

Lawrence Espinoza allowed five runs on seven hits in the loss throwing the first three innings. Guillen allowed four runs over the next 2 2/3 innings. Bertoncini threw 1 1/3 innings without allowing a hit and striking out two.

Dinuba scored a run in the first inning, but Espinoza didn’t get help from his defense. The first batter reached on an error and stole second. After a walk, another error loaded the bases.

Espinoza got a grounder off his shin. He recovered and threw to catcher Xavier Cantu to record the first out of the inning. After a flyout, Dinuba hit a shot off Espinoza’s glove for a single and scored the first run. Espinoza got a popout to end the inning with just one run against him.

The Stallions showed signs of life in the bottom of the second. With one out, Guillen reached on a bunt single and advanced to second on a throwing error. Jonathan Uribe hit a grounder to third, but the first baseman dropped the throw and Guillen came around to score for the Stallions.

From there, the Stallions couldn’t get much created on offense. Madera South only had two baserunners until the seventh inning.

The Emperors scored four more runs in the third inning, sending 10 batters to the plate. Dinuba banged out six hits, all singles, in the inning for a 5-1 lead.

Dinuba then sent another nine batters to the plate in the sixth inning. Dinuba banged out four hits, in addition to a walk and a hit batter to put the game away before Bertoncini induced a popout to end the inning.

Bertoncini struck out two in the seventh inning.

Pinch-hitter Leandro Frausto led off the seventh with a walk. After a flyout, Hernandez singled down the left field line to put two runners on.

The next two batters flied out to end the game.

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