Generals win Sunday doubleheader at FM
Johnstown, NY – The Generals concluded their weekend series with Fulton-Montgomery ("FM") with two convincing wins on Sunday afternoon. The team has now won 10 games in a row and 13 of the 14 games they have played in the northern portion of their schedule.
Playing conditions were cool but good. The temps were in the low 50s, the skies were blue, and the breeze was moderate. Small aircraft were active around the nearby Fulton County Airport. Fans enjoyed newly-improved seating at FM's ballyard.
Photo: Michael DeCarlo was dominant in Game Three
The first two games of the series were played in Herkimer on Saturday. The Generals won those games by the scores of 3-2 (8 inn.) and 9-2.
Head Coach Jason Rathbun handed the ball to Mike DeCarlo for the 1:00 p.m. game on Sunday. The big freshman had a day to remember, striking out 16 while allowing only one unearned run and three hits.
The Generals tallied twice in the top of the first. Ryan Watson and Chris Burns hit singles to right-center. Dan Smith stroked a hard double, and Herkimer led 2-0.
Photo: Dan Smith hitting a first-inning double
DeCarlo struck out three batters in the home half of the inning, but he also walked two. However, he became more effective and efficient with each inning.
FM's pitcher, Greg Mosetti, was also having a good afternoon. He only faced four Generals in the second inning, and would have set the side down in order but an error by the third baseman allowed Hayden Caffey to reach base.
DeCarlo set the Raiders down in order in the second. Mosetti kept Herkimer off the scoreboard in the top of the third. DeCarlo struck out two Raiders in the third. He froze the second batter with an unexpected third-strike slow curve. Mosetti set the Generals down in order in the fourth. The Raiders got their lone run on a single, a wild pitch, and and an error in their half of the frame.
The pitchers' duel continued until the Herkimer sixth when the Generals belted three firm hits and took advantage of a Raider error to score two runs. 4-1 Herkimer.
Photo: A Raider is caught stealing by a throw from catcher Brandon Overstreet to shortstop Brent Baker
The Generals added two more runs in their half of the seventh. Three Raiders came to the plate in the bottom of the inning. DeCarlo struck out all three. The final score was 6-1.
After the game, this writer asked winning pitcher DeCarlo what pitches were working best for him in this memorable game. He stated that his fastball and splitter were his bread-and-butter pitches today. DeCarlo's off-speed curves also impressed.
Herkimer batters overwhelmed FM's pitchers in Game Four, which was shortened to five innings by the run rule. Also, the Generals' starter, Ryan Watson, was effective and went the distance.
HCCC scored a run in the first, then exploded for five runs in the second. Paxton Jordan, Brent Baker, and Carlos Almonte all hit doubles in that inning. Watson struck out the side in the home half of the second.
The Generals scored four more in the third. AJ Fabrizio and Almonte had the big hits - both doubles. The Raiders scored twice in the bottom of the inning.
Walks and two hits gave Herkimer five more runs in the next inning. Watson sat down the Raiders in order in their half. 15-2 Generals.
Photo: General Lonnie Cohen slides home with a run in the fourth inning
Herkimer tacked on two more runs in the fifth.
The Raiders scored a run in the fifth, and then a marvelous play by center fielder AJ Fabrizio became the defensive highlight of the day. Fabrizio had to run hard to his left to field a well-hit ball. Fabrizio sprinted, dived, and made the catch as he slid on the ground. Two outs. Watson struck out the final batter, and the Generals won 17-3.
The red-hot Generals will have Monday off and will travel to meet Schenectady CCC on Tuesday for a 2:00 p.m. doubleheader in Schenectady's Central Park.
Nick Scribe, website writer
Herkimer had to deal with FM's Virginia Tech transfer Matt Snyder in Game One of the four-game series on Saturday. FM got on the board first, in the fourth inning, but the Generals responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning. FM struck again in the top of the fifth, but Herkimer responded again with an RBI single by Ryan Watson to tie the game at 2-2.
The game ran into the eighth inning. AJ Fabrizio stroked a lead-off hit. Ryan Watson laid down a sacrifice bunt. A short fly ball off the bat of Chris Burns plated the winning run and secured the 3-2 victory. Rob Hardy got the win in relief working four innings, allowing two hits, one walk, and one earned run, with three strikeouts.
Chris Burns started the Generals' second-game offense with a two-RBI single to give HCCC a 2-0 lead in the first inning. Herkimer added four runs in the fourth inning and three runs in the fifth to extend their lead to 9-2. That was enough for starting pitcher Kyle Garrison as he moved to 3-1 on the season. Garrison went six innings allowing six hits, one walk, and two earned runs while striking out eight.