WF West 3, Tumwater 0
(Tumwater, WA) Pitching is always key at any level of baseball and it’s always fun to see a special game but 100% of baseball coaches just want consistency and keep your team in the game with a chance to win. Tumwater’s coach Clay Hill couldn’t have asked for more from his starter Justin Barber. Barber went the distance against WF West throwing 7 innings. He gave up 7 hits, 1 walk, no hit batters, no wild pitches and 5 strikeouts with no earned runs. That stat line has seen way more wins than losses and every High school baseball coach could count on a trip to the play-offs if that were the average pitching performance.
But there are exceptions to every rule and the Bearcats Tyson Guerrero tossed one of those special games that was fun to watch. To counter that solid performance by Barber here’s what Guerrero did; pitched 7 innings faced 23 batters, 2 over the limit, 1 hit, no walks, no hit batters, no wild pitches, no runs and 15 strikeouts and he struck out the side 3 times. Guerrero had a 65% strikeout rate, you just might win a few games with that percentage rate.
Tumwater will be happy not to have to face Guerrero anymore he’s been their personal horror movie. Guerrero hit a double in the bottom of the 8th inning on Tuesday night knocking in the winning run in walk off fashion. Then on Wednesday he pitches like Cy Young and on top of it double to lead off the top of the 6th and came around to score the winning run on a base hit by Dakota Hawkins.
On that play runners were on 1st and 2nd with Guerrero on 2nd and Drew Forgione had walked. Hawkins slapped a shot to left but Tumwater’s Jakob Holbrook was right there and Guerrero stopped at 3rd but Holbrook’s feet went out from underneath him as he slipped on the damp grass giving Guerrero time to get home and score. Tumwater’s Barber buckled down and got out of the inning with no further damage getting batters to pop up, fly out and ground out.
Guerrero had a perfect game through 4 innings facing 12 batters and striking out 8. In the bottom of the 5th Tumwater’s Logan Hayes ended the no-hit bid with a solid shot to center. Hayes would work his way to 3rd but he would be stranded as Guerrero struck out the next 3 in a row to end the threat.
Heading into the top of 7 Barber was focused on staying within 1 run and quickly got 2 outs with a ground out to 3rd baseman Dustin Doll and strike out. Tysen Paul then unloaded a shot that nearly hit the THS gym wall in right field for a standup double. Guerrero was intentionally walked and Forgione came to the plate. Forgione ripped a hard grounder between 3rd and short and Doll made a tremendous play smothering it. He looked at trying to get the lead runner but it was too late and fired off a throw to 1st baseman Michael Wagar but it was off target and got by Wagar allowing 2 huge insurance runs to score and gave the Bearcats a 3-0 lead.
The T-Bird defense was solid all game so there is no doubt they were disappointed with the error but in the end Guerrero mowed the next 3 batters striking out the side the end the game. The win was huge it gave WF West the 2-1 season series advantage and could come into play come District tourney time. WF West improved to 6-1 in league play and 9-2 overall while Tumwater slips to 4-2 in league and 7-2 overall suffering their 2nd straight and only losses of the year.
Our Tommy Lowe of the Greene Realty Group Players of the Game went to both pitchers, Tyson Guerrero of the Bearcats and T-Birds’ Justin Barber. Our ProActive Physical Therapy Play of the Game also goes to Guerrero with a take your pick of plays, the 15 strikeouts, the lead-off double in the 6th or scoring the winning run.