The 2023 Hounds picked up where they left off on a cold, rainy Sunday morning, routing the Blazers with a 12-0 win capped by a walk-off homer by team MVP Greg Sells.
Atticus Conway made the start, newly healed from a broken wrist suffered during a longboard accident. Pitching through sporadic rain (as he did in the preseason), the sophomore starter made efficient work of the opponent, racking up 5 strikeouts with no walks and allowing only one hit in four innings of work. Rounding out the pitching performance was rookie Nick Albanese, the turkey huntin’ lefty, who sat down the only three batters he faced with strikeouts.
The Hounds took the lead in the first with an RBI by Arron Kruse (3B) (who would go on to lead the offense with total of 3 RBIs on the day) and a run on a balk. The game still relatively close in the third, Greg Sells (SS) earned a double before his team was gifted 3 runs on walks and a HBP by Joe Malafronte (RF), marking his second consecutive game with an HBP (the last being the HBP-turned-championship-winning run). The Doggos broke it open in the fourth, starting with a pair of doubles from player-manager Tony Correa (C) and Brandon Jessee (CF), the latter earning a cold-spiting RBI. Kruse and newly-unironically-nicknamed Matt “Daddy” Burch (1B) combined for twin RBI singles. Not to be left out, Colin French (LF) capped the scoring with the third double of the inning, adding to an impressive day that included a ranging, leaping catch earlier in the game. Starting the top of the fifth, the score was 11-0, and the umpire remarked that he wouldn’t mind one run to invoke the CMBA “12 runs after 5 innings” slaughter rule. Rising to the occasion, long COVID victim Greg Sells made the Blazers a long ball victim with a homer over the left field fence, putting them and the umpire out of their misery.
The Hounds were cheered on by a brave April crowd consisting of Susie and Mel, the Burches Tom, Laura, and Ian, as well as newcomers Joseline and Alexis (guests of Samuel Ortiz (EH, SS)) and the Conway Caravan. Post-game, the Hounds got some barbecue (y cerveza) at Russel’s. Weather-willing, the Hounds will take on the White Sox Tuesday afternoon at Winnemac park