Amateur Baseball Report, 1995 July 24

The third annual Sawyer Motors Classic at Cantine Field took place in abbreviated form this weekend, as Lefty's Sporting goods of the Albany Twilight League failed to show up. The other two teams, Hudson Valley Rookie League powerhouse the Newburgh Mets and host team the Saugerties Dutchmen played each other twice to settle the tournament on Saturday. Neither Newburgh's Paul Krafft nor Dutchman Tony Pilatich gave up a walk in the first seven-inning game, with Pilatich extending his streak to a team record 33 straight walk-less innings. The Dutchmen manufactured most of their five runs with baserunning, scoring twice on delayed double steals and once on Paul Robinson's inside-the-park homerun in their 5-1 victory. Both teams entered the nitecap knowing that Newburgh not only needed to win the game to split the series, but needed to win by more than four runs to take the run-differential tie-breaker. The Mets got off to a good start by beginning their half of the first with back-to-back-to-back doubles, and led 5-0 at the end of two. Saugerties came back with four runs on two hits and two errors in the third, and after Dutchmen hurler Jim Rutkey gave up a home run to John Weidenhof to make it 6-4, he gave way to Ray "Black Jack" Mikesh, who retired the last 14 Newburgh batters of the game in order. The Dutchmen's unusual baserunning was a little less successful in this game: Robinson was picked off unassisted by the pitcher in the first; the delayed double steal, 2-for-3 in game one, had mixed results as Jeff Layman was thrown out at second but Kiko Romagura scored on the play; finally, Joe Sheehan was thrown out at home when Robinson missed the ball on a suicide squeeze with the score tied in the sixth. Nonetheless, by game's end, Saugerties had put together enough runs for a 9-6 victory to sweep the Mets and the host team claimed their first Sawyer Motors Classic plaque.

Despite the abbreviation of the Dutchmen tournament, there was no shortage of baseball action in the Hudson Valley, as the Saugerties and Kingston American Legion squads squared off for the Ulster County title. Sawyertown's Post 72 had to battle not only their rivals from Post 150 of the Colonial City, but History as well. Kingston has dominated the series in the past few decades, and emotions have run high on both sides. Game one, held Saturday afternoon in Saugerties, was a tense affair. Kingston jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first with an RBI double from Mike Skerritt, a former Saugerties player turned traitor in the eyes of Sawyer faithful. The home squad battled back in the second, with Dave Tremper scoring from second when JD Gramoglia's infield single was booted into the outfield by the Colonials' second baseman. Kingston missed a chance to take the lead the following inning when Matt Brennie, starting on first, jogged the last few yards home on Skerritt's seeming RBI double; Skerritt over-ran second and was tagged out before Brennie crossed the plate, leaving the game knotted at one. On the Sawyer side of the plate, frustration mounted as Post 72 left a runner in scoring position in each of the third, fourth and fifth innings. Particularly demoralizing was the fourth, when Tremper led off with a walk, went to second on a wild pickoff throw, and then watched the 7-8-9 hitters in the order strike out in succession. Post 150 took the lead in the fifth as Erik Tresvik popped a solo homer over the short centerfield wall of the Teddy Lorenz Babe Ruth field, and when Kingston's Anthony Green cleared the wall in the sixth to make it 4-1, the game was out of reach of the Sawyers, who were stymied by Jason Brott's sidearm delivery and the Umpire's wide strike zone.

The tense Legion series continued Sunday night as Kingston hosted Saugerties at Lake Katrine's Gruner Field. Colonial hurler Mike Lindhorst struck out the side in the Sawyer first, but his control got shaky from there, and he walked six batters in the next four innings. Saugerties used two of those walks, along with Mike Onyon's RBI single, to take a 1-0 lead in the third. But Post 72 continued to squander scoring opportinities, leaving five runners in scoring position in the third thru fifth innings. Joe Delgado was also thrown out at the plate in the fifth on a ball many observers thought was fielded in foul territory. On their side of the plate, Kingston left three runners in scoring position but were unable to score on Sawyer hurler Ralph Facchiano thru four and a third. Then in the bottom of the fifth with one on and one out the skies opened up. The game was suspened on account of rain, to be resumed this evening at seven at Gruner. Saugerties leads the game 1-0, but the Colonials hold the one game to none edge in the best-of-three series. Game three, if neccessary, will be held Tuesday afternoon at Cantine field. The Mr. Squishy Show will have those results for you next week, as well as a report on the Roy Helsmoortel Memorial Tourney, a round-robin affair involving the Saugerties Dutchmen, Otsego Macs and Middletown Explorers. Until then, this is Joe P------k, on location in Saugerties for Mr. Squishy Sports.

Last Modified: 1995 September 26
Joe Schlobotnik /