AUBURN — The Auburn Doubledays’ offense got rolling in the sixth inning, but it wasn’t enough to overcome an early deficit.
The Doubledays scored three times but the State College Spikes plated the first seven runs and led wire-to-wire in a 9-3 victory at Falcon Park Sunday.
The Spikes finished with a 16-4 advantage in hits, with six players having multi-hit performances.
“They just found holes. They had some bloop hits and it just seemed like they were finding holes today. Not to take anything away from their hitters — their hitters had a good day — but it just seemed like they found seeing-eye hits,” said Michael Barrett, the Washington Nationals Catching Coordinator who filled in for Doubledays manager Jerad Head. “We need to make better pitches obviously, but for the most part their hitters found holes today.”
Adalberto Carrillo paced the Auburn offense with two hits and an RBI, while Carson Shaddy (run, RBI) and Kyle Marinconz (run) each had one hit.
Auburn starter Reid Schaller was pulled with two outs in the third inning after surrendering five hits and five earned runs.
Joan Adon gave up three hits and one run over 2 1/3 innings in his Doubledays debut. Carson Teel scattered five hits and one run over three innings, and Tanner Driskill gave up three hits, including a two-run homer, in the ninth.
“Adon’s first outing with us was encouraging,” Barrett said. “He commanded the fastball really well and threw some off-speed pitches over. He looked very comfortable, which is promising for a guy who just got called up.”
The Spikes struck first on an RBI single by Stanley Espinal in the first inning, and State College tacked on four more runs in the third on hits by Nick Dunn, Brady Whalen and Lars Nootbaar. Wadye Ynfante added to the Spikes’ lead with a bloop single to right field in the fourth, and had another RBI single in the sixth.
With Spikes starter Eli Kraus out of the game, the Doubledays’ bats came alive with three runs in the bottom of the sixth. Marinconz singled, advanced to third on an error and came home on a fielder’s choice, and Shaddy and Carrillo each followed with RBI singles.
“They changed pitchers. The lefty was spotting the fastball and we hit into a couple rally-killers there, a couple double plays. … When they brought in somebody else, we kind of had a fresh start with the offense,” Barrett said. “The guys did a good job of putting together a crooked number to give us a chance.”
The Doubledays loaded the bases but couldn’t push across a run in the seventh, and then Stanley Espinal sealed the win for the Spikes with a two-run shot in the ninth.
Auburn goes into the All-Star break with a 30-24 record. Six Doubledays — Angel Guillen, David Smith, Israel Pineda, Marinconz, Jacob Rhinesmith and Pablo O’Connor — will compete in the All-Star Game in State College Tuesday.
“The future is looking bright. … I have nothing but great things to say about these guys,” Barrett said. “Even when they’re not at their best, they still go out and grind out at bats. Their effort level is through the roof. Their learning curve and their aptitude is notable for a young team. For them to send as many All-Stars that they have is remarkable.”