by Nate Loop
The Foresters began their six game road trip with a three game series against the San Luis Obispo Blues, their main rivals for the CCL crown. The Foresters struggled at the plate all game and were unable to put together a 9th inning rally, and dropeed the first game of the series by a score of 5-3.
Ian McCarthy took the mound for the Foresters, while Gandy Stubblefield did the same for the Brewers.
McCarthy, who was absolutely dominant in his first four starts of the season, lost his last start and was looking to bounce back against the Blues.
That would not be the case, as the Blues scored one run in the first, two in the third, and two in the fifth, knocking McCarthy out after just 4 2/3 innings pitched. However, only three of those five runs were earned, as the Foresters committed four errors in the game, three of which came in the third inning.
An error by McCarthy allowed Keegan Dale to score (his second in the game, as he was driven in by a Bryan Peters single in the first) in the third, and Tanner Witt also scored on a fielder’s choice, after reaching on an error.
Stubblefield was also unable to go the requisite five innings, and would have come up with the win as he left the game with 3-2 advantage. Ryan O’Hearn drove in Kaeo Aliviado on a single in the fourth inning.
Stubblefield had been having control problems all game, giving up five walks in all, and a wild pitch in the fifth inning that allowed Richy Pedroza to score was the final straw for his manager, who swapped him out for Chad Girodo to finish off the inning.
The Foresters bullpen trio of Jose Cardona, Dae Yang Kim, and Brendon Shoemake combined to halt the Blues offense, as they gave up a total of four hits and no runs in 3 1/3 combined innings of work.
The Foresters entered the top of the ninth down 5-2, and had managed just two hits all game. They were able to get two runners on base, with Jacob Felts scoring on an error to make the game 5-3. However, it would be too little, too late, as Shane Hoelscher went down on strikes for the Foresters last out of the ballgame.
Girodo ended up with the win for the Blues, with McCarthy (4-2) taking his second loss of the season. Parker Ray picked up a save for the Blues.
The Foresters will look to bounce back against the Blues at 6pm in San Luis Obispo tomorrow.