Blue Devils outscore 96-16 in last six outings

Sunday, July 8, 2018

The Glendive Blue Devils made short work of the Williston Oilers in a home series Monday evening, outscoring the visitors by a combined score of 40-8 in the two games.

Monday’s contests added to the offensive hot streak the Blue Devils have been on of late. Over their last six games, the team has been on an absolute tear with the bats, outscoring their opponents 96-16, a remarkable 80-run differential. Monday’s games against Williston were against their A squad, not their more experienced AA team, but nevertheless, Blue Devils head coach Brent Diegel said he is pleased with what he has seen his players do at the plate in recent games.

“Offensively, yes, I’ve really liked the way we’ve swung it,” Diegel said.

While the bats have been hot and the team has also had some strong pitching performances of late, Diegel said the one thing still holding them back from their full potential are defensive miscues. The Blue Devils committed five errors in their second game Monday, helping the Oilers out to an early, big lead before the Glendive bats woke up big time later in the game.

“Offensively, that’s been our strong point, and the pitching has been adequate enough to win some games, but it’s going to come down to that defense,” Diegel said.

Now sporting a record of 21-8 as the regular season winds down, the Blue Devils currently sit in second place in their conference. Diegel said as long as his team can avoid injuries and tighten up their defense, they have a good shot at making a run at the conference title.

“As long as we can stay healthy, I think our chances are as good as anybody’s,” Diegel said. “I like our chances if we can stay healthy and continue to work on the error part of it.”

The Blue Devils travel to Laurel on Saturday for a series with the Laurel Dodgers to make up a series rained out last month. They travel to Dickinson on Tuesday for an away series and then return home Wednesday to face the Dodgers again.

Blue Devils 18, Williston 8

The Glendive Blue Devils found themselves down by a score of 7-2 going into the bottom of the fourth inning when their bats caught fire and they scored 11 runs in the inning to pull away for a mercy rule-shortened victory.

The home team grabbed a 1-0 lead early in the first inning off a solo homer off the bat of second baseman Pacyn Partridge. But things got ugly in the top of the second as poor pitching and worse defense allowed the Oilers to plate five runs of their own. The Blue Devils picked up a run in the bottom of the second to cut the Williston lead to 5-2, but the Oilers picked up two more runs in the top of the fourth to make it 7-2 heading into the bottom of that inning.

Then the Glendive bats came alive and the Oilers’ gloves came undone.

Partridge singled to open the inning then moved to third on a single by Tyler Clapp. He then scored on an Oilers’ error coming off the bat of Jayden Holley to open the scoring deluge. Another error allowed Clapp and Holley to score. Sean Daniel Taylor then singled to drive in another run, cutting the Williston lead to one run. After a couple more Williston defensive miscues, Wyatt Buxbaum drew a walk with the bases loaded to tie the game. Partridge then came up for the second time in the inning and slapped a hard single into right field, driving in two more runs. Clapp then smoked a ball into deep center for a triple which brought Partridge in. Holley then singled to bring home Clapp and two batters later scored himself on another Williston error to close out the 11-run inning.

Though they did give up another run in the top of the fifth, the Blue Devils plated seven more in their half of the inning – with all seven runs scoring via walks or errors – to end the game on the mercy rule.

Multiple Blue Devils finished the game with multiple RBIs. Partridge led his team with 4 RBIs while Holley and David Skerritt each drove in three.

Though pleased with how well his team hit the ball, Diegel was less impressed with the pitching he got out his staff for the game or with the five errors his squad committed to help stake the Oilers to their early lead.

Blue Devils 12, Williston 0

A strong pitching performance from starter Trenton Reinhart and continued hot hitting at the plate helped the Blue Devils put away the Williston Oilers in five innings during their first game Monday evening.

Rienhart needed just 50 pitches to complete the game, giving up five hits while striking out four and not issuing a single walk. For once, Reinhart’s pitching performance was also backed up by solid defense, as the Blue Devils committed just one error in the game.

The Blue Devils took an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Pacyn Partridge scored from third on a balk called on the Oilers pitcher. Glendive then broke the game open in the bottom of the second as six runs came around to score.

Jayden Holley got the second inning off to a good start by doubling into right field. David Skerritt then lined a single into center to bring Holley home. Skerritt scored three batters later when Trenton Lambert got plunked by a pitch with the bases juiced. Next four more Glendive runs came home off of three wild pitches and a fielder’s choice play. Partridge then singled and was finally brought home on a single by Tyler Clapp to close out the inning.

The Blue Devils added five more runs in the bottom of the third, concluding with a two-run shot by Partridge over the right field fence to make the score 12-0.

Partridge led the way for the Blue Devils on offense, going 2-2 with a walk and 2 RBIs. Cade Dockter chimed in with 2 RBIs on 1-3 hitting and Skerritt and Clapp each picked up an RBI while going 2-3 at the plate.

“Offensively, that’s been our strong point, and the pitching has been adequate enough to win some games, but it’s going to come down to that defense,”
Brent Diegel, Blue Devil coach