Sunday’s match-up between the Chinooks and the Bucs promised to be a good game, with two of the league’s best teams (so far) embroiled in an early afternoon bout. The sun was shining bright and the temperature hit the mid-70′s, probably the best weather I’ve seen so far, for this Father’s Day event.
Bucs pitcher Erick Allen got the start but ran into trouble early, giving up four runs (three earned) in just one complete inning pitched. Tanner Kichler surrendered another run in relief before Mike Theodore came on to stabilize the game for the Bucs. Theodore threw six innings of one-hit ball, not to allow another run. Unfortunately for the Bucs, the damage had already been done. Every Chinooks player managed to reach base somehow — including Brent Fukushima who got on safely twice by way of the bean ball — and made efficient use of their on-base chances to score five runs. Four Chinooks pitchers combined for a shutout, including starter Mike Jeffreys who struck out three on two innings of work. David Mitroff, Caleb Dirks, and Jacob Howell combined with Jeffreys to hold the Bucs scoreless.
For Chugiak-Eagle River, Griffin Gum logged a hit and a walk to bring his OBP up to .571, second in the league behind Fukushima. On the Bucs end, Danny Susdorf went 3-for-5, while Chase Compton and Collin Ferguson went 2-for-4.
This game was actually my surprise Father’s Day present from my kids and wife, and we all went to the park. With my whole clan there at the park with me, and given the reason for the event, I paid a little bit less attention to the game than usual. However, I managed to get some decent pictures and few scouting notes.
The Chinooks look like a team that can generate offense by doing the little things right: bunting, taking a walk, getting good pitches to hit, using speed to gain a base. Steven Karkenny executes the bunt well and showed that he can use it for a hit. Griffin Gum used it to get on and took second with a piece of aggressive basestealing. Brent Fukushima got plunked twice, but once he got a chance to swing he showed plus speed down the line (4.15s).
Ryan Leonards continues to look like a solid left infielder. In this game he manned both sides of second base and showed soft hands as part of two double-play combos. At one point he looked indecisive about the play and let a runner reach first on what should have been an out. At the plate he continued to show patience. He also looked like he might have a bit of pull power when he crushed one deep but foul.
Mike Theodore was highly efficient, using 58 pitchers to get through six innings. He kept batters off balance by changing speeds. Brenden Kalfus showed good patience at the plate to draw a pair of walks against some good pitching.
As for photos, I managed to snap about 55 good ones. I was focusing on trying to get some Chinooks head shots since this was my third Bucs game of the year (and my first Chinooks one) but I got some Bucs in there too. Check out the full gallery with all 55 photos. Below are some of my favorites: