PBB: DP wins with small ball, beats Santa Barbara, 8-1

Dos Pueblos' Joshua Tedeschi lays down an RBI drag bunt during the Chargers' 8-1 win over Santa Barbara.

Dos Pueblos’ Joshua Tedeschi lays down an RBI drag bunt during the Chargers’ 8-1 win over Santa Barbara. (Presidio Sports Photos)

 

Dos Pueblos’ execution of carrying out the game plan was superb in Thursday’s Channel League baseball win at Santa Barbara High.

The Chargers played little ball to perfection and got a fine pitching outing from Daniel Buratto to hand the Dons an 8-1 beating and sweep the season series.

Dos Pueblos, which started the week tied for first place with Santa Barbara, now holds a two-game lead over its rival. The Chargers are 5-1 while the Dons fall to 3-3.

The bunt was DP’s biggest weapon on Thursday. The Chargers used it not only to move runners but also to score runs. Michael Boelter bunted for a RBI during a three-run third inning and Joshua Tedeschi laid down a bunt for a run in the sixth inning.

Altogether, the Chargers executed six bunt plays in the game. On one play, the Dons failed to cover first base on the bunt, leaving the fielder with nowhere to throw the ball.

“It’s a fundamental that’s kind of a lost art but we take pride in it,” DP coach Nick Katzenstein said of the bunt. “You can win ball games if you execute it and we did today.”

Boelter is one of DP’s big hitters (he’s batting .356) but takes pride in bunting.

“Generally, that’s something we do as a program, a lot of moving over,” he said. “We had a lot of base-hit bunts, a few RBIs, two sacrifice bunts for RBIs. And that’s how we beat SB today. We beat them at their own game. They’re usually a team that bunts. We just did it better than they did.”

Santa Barbara coach Fred Warrecker praised DP for being able to expose a weakness in his team’s defense.

“To their credit, they saw we had a problem with the infield defense on the bunt and they bunt, bunt, bunt, bunt,” he said. “They did it and they executed and they deserve all the credit.”

With two wins against Santa Barbara, Katzenstein said all the pressure was on the Dons going into Thursday’s game.

DP's Daniel Buratto pitched a complete game and improved to 4-2 on the season.

DP’s Daniel Buratto pitched a complete game and improved to 4-2 on the season.

“I told my guys that and I said, ‘Let’s play loose, the pressure’s on them.’ The thing with this game is going to be execution, and we executed. We played a little bit of small ball and good things happened for us.”

Warrecker lamented that the majority of DP’s hits never reached the outfield.

“They had three hits that left the infield in seven innings,” he said. “We absolutely beat ourselves. It was bad. Two of the hits were in the last inning. The left fielder never caught a fly, the center fielder caught two flies and the right fielder never caught a fly.”

“What a weird game,” Katzenstein said. “Seventy-five percent of the hits were infield hits.”

DP leadoff hitter Quinn Peacock opened the game with an infield hit and came around to score after a sacrifice by Dustin Demeter, a wild pitch and a bloop single over third base by Luke Coffey.

Santa Barbara put Ian True and Trevor Moropoulos on base in the second but DP starter Daniel Buratto struck out the next batter to end the inning.

The left-handed Buratto went the distance, giving up one run on six hits while striking out six.

“He did an exceptional job from the get-go,” said Katzenstein.

Dos Pueblos used its small-ball tactics to score three runs off Santa Barbara starter Gabe Grandcolas in the third inning. Peacock led off with a single and Demeter and Coffey followed with bunt singles to load the bases. Buratto hit a ground ball to deep shortstop, scoring Peacock and leaving the bases loaded. Nick Noggle’s sacrifice fly to center plated Demeter and Boelter’s bunt brought in Coffey for a 4-0 lead.

One of the Dons’ strengths this season has been defense. “But on the bunt thing, they saw it and they just went right back to it,” Warrecker said. “I thought they did a real good job and we didn’t do a good job.”

Santa Barbara got on the board in the fifth inning. Tim Stickles and Bryce Morison singled, moved up on a wild pitch and Stickles scored on a sacrifice fly by Skyler Sabado.

The Chargers made it 5-1 with more little ball in the sixth. Nick Noggle reached on a bunt, went to second on a balk, was sacrificed to third by Boelter and scored on a bunt by Tedeschi.

DP tacked on three runs in the seventh on a two-run bloop single to right by Joel Corona and  Blair Hawn’s ground out.

Dos Pueblos improves to 10-9 on the season while Santa Barbara falls to 11-6.