Base running, Pitching Power Baseball Team to 7-0 Win

Jared Lahey stands at the mound during pregame warm-ups on Monday.

Jared Lahey stands at the mound during pregame warm-ups on Monday.

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by Dakota Antelman

Aided by an inside the park home run and aggressive baserunning by his hitters, varsity pitcher Jared Lahey led the Hawks baseball team to a 7-0 shutout win over the Fitchburg Red Raiders on Monday afternoon.

Lahey pitched a complete game shutout versus the struggling Red Raiders. He held them off the board, and largely off base, allowing just five hits in seven innings. Lahey compiled six strikeouts and forced Fitchburg’s hitters to bounce harmless ground balls towards Hudson’s waiting infielders all afternoon.

“I was throwing mainly fastballs,” Lahey said. “[I was] trying to get strikes even though I don’t throw that fast. Just trying to pump strikes past them.”

Monday’s game was Lahey’s first of 2015. He is not among the Hawk’s primary pitchers but was inserted into the lineup Monday to give those primary pitchers rest ahead of a gauntlet of league games later this month.

Regardless, his coach Tim Reindhart was confident in his abilities before the game. He in turn celebrated the shutout after its conclusion.

“He’s thrown in practice to batters, and he’s thrown in bullpen,” Reinhardt offered as a reason for his confidence. “We were aware of what he could do and how mentally tough he is. I wasn’t surprised at all to see him go out and throw really really well.”

Jared Lahey was given sizable run support nonetheless. Hudson’s Ben Palatino struck in the first inning when he hit a line drive, inside-the-park-home run, to center field. His hit drove in Domenic Fontes, who had reached base earlier in the inning.  Thanks in part to the big home run, Palatino finished the game with 4RBIs.

Behind Palatino, bats throughout the lineup came alive. Usual sluggers Conner Bacon and Kyle Sullivan had hands in three of seven runs and a slew of pinch hitters and defensive substitutions late in the game managed to keep the pressure on for Hudson.

Perhaps the only hiccup occurred in the seventh inning, when the Red Raiders were pushing to spoil Lahey’s shutout. With two outs, catcher Rocco Malloy failed to catch a fly ball in foul ground. Ryan Silva had similar struggles in the outfield, with wind blowing hard in the game’s final inning. The Red Raiders pushed runners as far as second and third base before Evan Nelson finally hauled in the game ending catch.

“I got a little nervous,” Lahey admitted, speaking about getting the final out. “I wanted the shutout. Having [Ryan] Silva miss a pop fly in the outfield made it harder. I had to calm down there.”

Hudson found its way against a now 0-5 Fitchburg team. Base running and strong pitching from their debut pitcher helped them keep pace with Nashoba in the standings and open the month of May on a winning note.

“I think our pitchers are gonna give us a chance to be in a lot of games,” Reinhardt glowed. “And any time that they can give you that chance, you win a lot. Every game our pitchers and all our guys have done what we ask them to do; which is give us a chance to win.”