Baseball: Clemente capitalizes on Taft miscues for victory
Updated: April 23, 2012 7:58PM
Clemente found a way to cure its problem with leaving men on base. The Wildcats put the ball in play and took advantage of several Taft defensive miscues to defeat its Jackie Robinson North rival 11-1 in five innings.
‘‘We’ve been struggling with guys in scoring position,’’ Clemente coach Nelson Perez said. ‘‘We left eleven men on (in a recent loss to Morgan Park). We’ve trying to let guys know not to try and do too much up at the plate.’’
The Wildcats (12-2, 6-1) pushed across three runs in the second inning to take a 3-1 lead. Those runs were aided by three Taft (18-2, 4-2) errors. One of those runs came off of a squeeze bunt by Steven Glochowski. It was the start of a 2-for-2, three RBI day for the first-year catcher.
‘‘This is his first year ever playing catcher and defensively he’s come a long way,’’ Perez said. ‘‘Offensively he needs to stick to the plan and sacrifice himself for the team. He’s done a good job of that.’’
Jonathan Figueroa (4-1) worked all five innings and struck out eight while walking only one. Just as importantly his fielders did not commit an error all game. He worked out of jams in the first and fourth inning.
‘‘In the beginning of the game, I was struggling a little bit,’’ Figueroa said. ‘‘The way my defense was playing gave me the confidence to settle down and throw strikes.’’
For Taft, it was the second straight loss after starting the season with 18 consecutive victories. The Eagles committed five errors and allowed two infield hits that all proved costly.
‘‘Yes, I was surprised we beat them in five innings,’’ Perez said. ‘‘I respect how (Taft) coach (Rich) Pildes prepares his young men.’’
Azarel Lugo pounded out a single and double for the Eagles and scored its only run.
Yerbis Arias and Jerry Figueroa had multi-hit games for the Wildcats. All three Figueroa brothers start for Clemente with Juan, who is a senior, starting at second and Jerry, a junior, starting in center.
‘‘It helps to have them with me on the varsity,’’ Jonathan Figueroa said. ‘‘They mentor me and keep me focused.’’