Big Train Pitchers Throw Second Straight No-hitter in Exhibition
The pitching staff led the way for the second straight night, as the Bethesda Big Train staff only allowed one baserunner and did not give up a hit or a walk in its pre-season exhibition victory over the BCC All Stars 5-0 at Shirley Povich Field.
In a shortened seven inning game, the Big Train staff came within two outs of throwing a perfect game. Unfortunately, Zack Kirtley (Saint Mary's College (CA)) could not handle what appeared to be a routine ground ball, allowing a baserunner and ending hope for a perfect game. Kirtley (Saint Mary's College (CA)) quickly made up for his mistake, as the next batter hit a ground ball to him that he fielded perfectly to lead a double play. Behind the performances of pitchers Alex Calvert (South Carolina), Blake Smith (Mississippi State University), Grant Gordon (Lenoir Rhyne University) and Noah Jarboe (Davis & Elkins), the Big Train struck out the BCC All Stars four times and continued to find ways to get each batter out.
The Big Train offense was held mostly in check for the evening, but the team was able to explode in the third inning where it scored four of its five runs on the day. The team was able to take an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, but it had little to do with its offense, as Matt Toscano (Saint Mary's College (CA)) got on base after being hit by the pitcher and scored on a balk. But after being held hitless for two innings, Calvert (South Carolina) was able to lead off the inning with a double. Two batters later, Brandon Hunley (Sacramento State University) launched a double to left-center field to bring in two runs. Kirtley (Saint Mary's College (CA)) followed that with a single to bring in a third run that inning. Kirtley (Saint Mary's College (CA) would eventually reach home for the team's fourth run of the inning on a fielder's choice after the BCC All Stars catcher did not cleanly handle a strikeout pitch.
Notes: Calvert not only started the game at pitcher, but hit as well for the Big Train for all seven innings, recording the team's first hit of the game in that key third inning... the Big Train season opener will be Tuesday at Rockville... the home opener is Wednesday at 7:30 against the Silver Spring-Tacoma Thunderbolts, the first 500 fans to arrive will receive a free opening night T-shirt.
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