Big Train Drops 8-3 Game to Giants

Alex Calvert (Erskine College) throws a pitch

In a disheartening 8-3 loss, the Bethesda Big Train dropped their second straight game, this time against the Gaithersburg Giants.

Bethesda starting pitcher Alex Calvert (Erskine College), pitching on short rest, exited the game early, giving up 4 runs (3 earned) on 4 hits and 3 walks over just 2 innings pitched. It was apparent early on that Calvert did not have his best stuff. He had difficulty finding the strike zone, and threw more balls than strikes in the first two innings. Blaine Lafin (Virginia Military Institute), who entered the game in relief of Calvert, also struggled. In 3 ⅓ innings, Lafin allowed 4 runs (2 earned) on 6 hits and 3 walks. One bright spot, however, was Mack Meyer (University of San Francisco) who pitched 3 ⅔ innings of 1 hit ball to end the game.

Manager Sal Colangelo bemoaned his lack of available pitchers in the game, claiming that “[Calvert] wasn’t himself” due to being “short-pitched” while waiting for the rest of the team’s players to arrive in Bethesda. He commended both Calvert and Lafin, who also pitched on short rest, for “trying to keep [the team] in the ballgame” and giving their “best effort,” despite being put in a tough situation.

The Big Train offense looked rusty against Giants pitcher Matt Chanin (UMBC), who scattered 7 hits over 7⅔ innings of 1 run ball. Only center fielder Clayton Daniel (Jacksonville State University), who is quickly becoming Big Train’s best hitter with a .500 batting average and .640 on base percentage, seemed able to figure him out. Daniel reached base three times against the right hander.

Daniel also made several tremendous plays in centerfield, including a leaping catch in deep centerfield that saved a run in the first inning and a sliding grab in the fourth that prevented another run from scoring.

After Chanin exited in the eighth, Big Train looked ready to attempt a comeback. They scored 2 runs in the ninth off of Gaithersburg reliever Nick DeCarlo (Mount St. Mary’s University), but could not manage to salvage a victory.

“Look,” Colangelo said, “today we weren’t ready to play. …. We were lackadaisical. We didn’t compete until the last inning. We didn’t play hard. We were just going through the motions. You go through the motions with them, and they’re an average team… You’re going to get beat. That’s just the way it is. We’re going to come ready to go tomorrow with a better attitude and get after it.”

The Bethesda Big Train hopes to turn it around tomorrow in Rockville, against the Express. First pitch is at 7 PM. 

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