Woods Dominant as Pippins Earn Series Win
YAKIMA, Wash. – After watching the Gresham GreyWolves smash four home runs en route to a 8-5 win at Yakima County Stadium on Thursday night, the Pippins needed a strong pitching performance to bounce back on Friday. Kade Woods (Spokane Falls CC) gave the Pippins just that, and then some, as he dominated the Gresham hitters, allowing just one run over 7 2/3 innings of work, while the offense did their part as well, earning the Pippins a 4-1 win on Friday to take the series over Gresham.
The Pippins (6-6) gave Woods some early run support, putting taking a 2-0 lead in the 1st inning after Steve Sordahl (St. Martin’s) lined a single up the middle to plate Michael Wyatt (Columbia Basin) and Dustin Yates (Washington State). The Pippins tacked on another in the bottom of the 3rd, as Nick Plaia (Cal Baptist) singled in Mitch Ellis (Western Illinois) who had doubled to begin the frame. After rolling through his first three innings of work, Woods had a minor hiccup in the 4th, as Gresham (6-9) got on the board via a Tyler Parker (Clackamas CC) solo home run to right center, cutting the Pippins lead to 3-1. The Pippins responded soon after, however, producing a run in the 5th after a Sordahl groundout scored Lucas Denney (Seattle U), who had walked to begin the frame. Trailing 4-1 in the 6th, Gresham threatened as Parker walked and got to third on a stolen base and wild pitch, but Woods, brilliant with runners on all night, struck out the final two batters he faced to end the threat. After a retiring the side in order in the 7th inning, Woods retired the first two batters he faced in the 8th before hitting his 100 pitch limit.
Connor White (Columbia Basin) came on for Woods and completed the four out save, striking out the final two batters he faced to preserve a 4-1 victory for the Pippins.
Game Notes: In his 7 2/3 innings of work, Woods threw 66 of his 100 pitches for strikes, while striking out five and walking just one. Woods scattered six hits (three for extra bases) and did not allow Gresham to put multiple baserunners on in a single inning en route to picking up the win and moving to 2-1. Gresham starter, Jarrod Billig (Seattle U), lasted just three innings, allowing six hits and three runs to take the loss and fall to 1-2. White’s save was the second of the series as he also closed out Wednesday’s 5-3 come-from-behind victory, and was his third of the season, tied as of Friday night for the West Coast League lead.
With three hits on the night, Wyatt, who entered the game ranked third in the WCL in batting average, picked up his second three-hit outing of the season, and his fourth multi-hit performance in total. With two hits apiece, Sordahl and Plaia each picked up their fourth multi-hit games of the season. With his double to right in the bottom of the 3rd, Ellis extended his hitting streak to 12 games, becoming the only Pippins batter to hit safely in every game this season. His 12 game hitting streak ranks second in the league behind only Evan Johnson of Wenatchee (15 games). Ellis also recorded his third multi-hit performance of the season. The Pippins stranded at least ten baserunners for the second consecutive game and for the third time this season.
With the win, the Pippins are back to .500 and stay three games back of the Corvallis Knights in the WCL South Division standings. With the loss, Gresham falls to 6-9 and to 4.5 games back of Corvallis.
What’s Next: The GreyWolves will head to Wenatchee for a three game series beginning tomorrow night with the AppleSox at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium. The Pippins begin a five-game road trip tomorrow night, as they will head to Kelowna for a three-game series with the Falcons before venturing for a two-game set with the Walla Walla Sweets. The Pippins will send out left-hander Josh Tedeschi (Utah) who will make his third start of the season in the series opener against Kelowna. Tedeschi will face off against the Falcons’ left-hander, Braeden Toikka (Western Oklahoma State), with first pitch set for 6:35 p.m. from Elks Stadium.
ABOUT THE PIPPINS: The Yakima Valley Pippins compete in the West Coast League, one of the nation’s premier summer collegiate wood bat leagues. The Pippins play their home games at Yakima County Stadium (“The Orchard”) in Yakima, Washington. After winning 96 games during their first three seasons in the WCL, the Pippins set the mark as the winningest WCL expansion team after three years. Yakima County Stadium will play host to the 2017 West Coast League All-Star Game, along with an extensive 31-game home season for Year No. 4 of Pippins' Baseball in 2017. Read more online at PippinsBaseball.com, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube with #ThatWasAwesome.