It’s all in the socks for pitcher Jeremy Spezia.
Off to a fast start in the Macomb Area Conference’s White Division, Harrison Twp. L’Anse Creuse has experienced some recent problems scoring runs despite losing just one game in league play before Monday’s home game against Romeo.
Spezia took care of the pitching and hitting. His two-run single in the bottom of the sixth started a six-run rally in a 6-0 victory.
“I had been kind of struggling at the plate, so I went with the throwback socks,” said Spezia, who struck out seven and gave up two hits.
“I was just trying to find something over the plate I could drive. The bases were loaded, and I was just trying to get it to the outfield. Fortunately, I was able to get it down the line and drive in two.”
On the mound, he improved to 5-0 for his ranked team.
“My fastball was working pretty well; it had some tail on it,” Spezia said. “The off-speed was working as well, and the change-up was getting some ground balls. My infield was unbelievable today. They helped me out a lot.”
L’Anse Creuse improved to 6-1 in the White and 17-3 overall with two more games with Romeo on tap this week. The Bulldogs are 3-4 in conference play and 5-10 overall.
The Lancers depend on solid defense and good pitching. Both were evident in the early going as Brendan Craven made a spectacular play at shortstop in the third inning to rob Zach Nies of a hit.
In the same inning, the infield turned a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning after Blake McRae walked.
“He’s my (Jose) Iglesias,” coach Bob Walmsley said. “He has a strong arm. He goes deep in the hole, and people don’t think he can make that throw. He’s the class valedictorian.
“We’ve played nine games in 10 days, and they’re a little tired. We’re pretty deep in pitching this year. We’ve thrown nine different guys already. We just tell them to throw strikes. We just don’t want them to walk people. If the other team hits it, then good for them.’’
Baserunning was an issue for the Lancers as three runners were thrown out at second base in the first four innings.
Spezia was mowing down hitters, getting six strikeouts through the first five innings in the scoreless battle.
The Lancers finally started a rally in the fifth when Austin Brigman walked and Aaron Dyke stroked a single down the leftfield line with one out.
The rally stalled on a 6-4-3 double play by the Bulldogs’ defense.
L’Anse Creuse finally scored in the sixth when Jake Hugall singled with one out. Craven walked to send Alex Dyke to the plate with two on.
Dyke walked to load the bases, giving Spezia a chance to be the hero and help his own cause on the mound.
His shot down the leftfield line scored two Lancers. Hayden Heinrich followed with a single to score another run for a 3-0 lead.
“Jeremy’s a good ballplayer,” Walmsley said. “When he puts it all together, he’s tough to beat. He’s starting to play with some other pitches.”
Romeo went to the bullpen, and Brigman laced a two-run single to make it 5-0.
Dyke doubled to put runners at second and third, and Griffin Worzella laid down a perfect squeeze bunt to score the runner from third for a 6-0 edge.
Contact Perry A. Farrell: 313-222-2555 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @farrellperry.
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