WAYNESBORO – The Waynesboro American Legion Post 15 baseball team has shown flashes of brilliance during the season.
It has also revealed an uglier side, characterized by mistakes in the field and an inability to hit consistently.
The good and bad came to fruition last week when Post 15 lost to St. Thomas, 8-7 in the final inning. Waynesboro followed up with a 14-1 victory at home against Fort Loudon on Friday.
This week, Post 15 stumbled in an 11-1 loss to Chambersburg. Then, on Friday, Waynesboro’s offense, defense and pitching came through in the clutch with a morale-boosting 4-1 win against the visiting Double-A’s.
“We’re battling,” said Waynesboro coach Dan McCleaf. “We’re kind of in a lull with our offense.
“We didn’t have Josh (Clapsaddle) and Bryce (Shaffer) on Wednesday. Isaiah (Reed) started, but we did not field the ball well; we made a lot of errors. He pitched three innings and didn’t give up a hit but we made all kinds of errors.”
The schedule is ratcheting up for the remainder of the season.
“We’ve had big breaks between our games but now we’ve got 10 games in 12 days,” McCleaf said. “That could get us going.”
Fayetteville got going to start the scoring, but it could have been worse for Post 15 starting pitcher Luke Martin.
The Double-A’s scored a run and had runners on second and third with no outs. Martin struck out two of the next three batters and picked up an assist as he fielded a short ground ball for the second out.
It was tit for tat as Post 15 tied the score in the bottom of the second inning. After an out, Garrett Blount hit a hard double to center field. He scored when the next batter, Jared Peck, singled.
“Their pitcher had a pretty good two-pitch mix,” said Blount, who got on base all three at bats and factored in the scoring in all three at bats. “He was working fast ball, curve ball. When the count came to 3-2, I figured there was a good chance he was going to throw a fast ball, because you can’t guarantee the curve ball is going to cross the plate every time.”
A fielder’s choice and an inning-ending double play prevented Fayetteville from taking the lead in the top of the third.
Waynesboro took the lead for good in the home half of the inning, and Blount was front and center after getting hit by a pitch with the bases loaded with two outs. Tyler Caron was on third base when Blount was given the free pass to first. Logan Clapsaddle singled, stole second and scored when Caron reached base on the error.
Post 15 scored its fourth run as Caden Green tripled and scored on a check swing single by Blount in the fifth frame.
Waynesboro (5-3) hosts Greencastle on Saturday at 5 p.m. Post 15 will also play at home on Monday against Chambersburg and are at Fayetteville on Tuesday.