By Ben Cassidy
Prior to last Sunday’s game against the Stoneham Sabers, the Somerville Alibrandis were experiencing one of the many incongruous baseball phenomena that are impenetrable to casual observers of the sport and beloved by its most fervent fans: Though the Alibrandis had won their previous two contests, buoyed by excellent pitching and flawless fielding, they weren’t hitting well. In fact, they were hardly hitting at all; in its two victories, the squad had tallied just four runs.
But baseball has a way of sorting out these inconsistencies, and the Alibrandis were reminded of this hardball reality against the Sabers, dropping their second game to Stoneham this season in a 2-1, 13-inning affair at Recreation Park that featured more offensive struggles for the Alibrandis (7-4-1 as of Sunday). While the club managed 13 hits, only one of them went for extra bases (a double by Nate Witkowski). Coupled with an uncharacteristically poor defensive game (the Alibrandis committed four errors), the team’s power outage proved to be too much to overcome against the Sabers (9-3), who solidified their position at the top of the Yawkey Baseball League’s Ted Williams Division.
The Alibrandis’ pitching kept them in the game. After Chris McKenzie and Dan Mahoney handled the first six innings and allowed just one unearned run, Vladimir Camacho pitched the next 6 1/3 innings, taking the loss upon letting up an unearned run to the hosts in the bottom of the 13th inning. Camacho struck out 11 batters and walked only one during his appearance, which was his first for the Alibrandis.
Camacho’s promising outing continued the Alibrandis’ recent run of stellar pitching. Last Wednesday, Jon Morse yielded just four hits over six innings as the Alibrandis beat the Brighton Braves 3-0 at Trum Field. According to assistant manager Cameron Lynch, it was Morse’s “best performance of the year.” Lynch cited Morse’s ability to “keep guys off balance” by mixing his pitches as a reason for his effectiveness. Closer Brian Tanguy, who pitched 25 scoreless innings for the 2013 Alibrandis, picked up his first save of the 2014 campaign, and Justin Crisafulli led the Alibrandis’ offense with three hits and two RBIs.
Last Monday, Alibrandis pitcher Chris Foundas dominated the West Roxbury Nationals in a 1-0 Alibrandis victory. Foundas’ two-hit shutout was nearly matched by Nationals pitcher Eoin McAvinchey, who also went the distance and allowed four hits. Davidson Peguero drove in the Alibrandis’ only run.
The Alibrandis host the AlThomas Athletics tonight and the Malden Maddogs on Friday at Trum Field; a make-up date for last Friday’s postponed game against the Savin Hill Dodgers has yet to be announced. The Alibrandis were to have played the Brighton Black Sox at Rogers Park on Monday.