Related Stories

FARMINGTON — Hitting a walkoff grand slam is nothing new for Reagan Todd.

Todd, a regional pickup for D-BAT Leach out of Colorado, ended the Carolina Vaqueros' Connie Mack World Series run with a blast over the center field wall to give the Dallas team a 7-3 victory in nine innings on Wednesday night at Ricketts Park.

The Arizona State commit said a similar situation came up during his high school career with the bases loaded.

"Semifinals, high school championships, they walked the guy in front of me, and I ended up hitting the walk-off grand slam," Todd said. "I like the pressure, and it felt good to get the W for the team."

Todd got his chance after pitcher Grant Schneider worked a two-out walk with two outs.

Carolina Vaqueros’ Brandon A. Marrero-Barreto gets tagged out at home plate on Wednesday in Game 14 of the Connie Mack World Series against D-BAT
Carolina Vaqueros' Brandon A. Marrero-Barreto gets tagged out at home plate on Wednesday in Game 14 of the Connie Mack World Series against D-BAT Leach at Ricketts Park in Farmington. ( Alexa Rogals/The Daily Times)

"We were just trying to get over Schneider, cause Schneider is more of just a pitcher only," head coach Pat Leach said. "Schneider did a good job working a walk there, and when Todd came up, I thought we were in a good situation."

Todd was listed as only a pitcher on the D-BAT roster, but Leach said he had no problem inserting his pickup into the lineup and playing him at first base as the game stretched into extra innings.

"When we got to where we had to make all these changes, I was completely fine with putting Reagan Todd at first and having him be in the order," Leach said. "We played against him in Arizona, and he swung it and made himself stand out."

While most pitchers rarely swing a bat, Todd said he has been hitting with his high school team and club team all summer and was ready when the opportunity arose.

"I wasn't imagining I'd ever get an at-bat in this tournament, but I hit at home and with my club team," he said. "I wasn't a random pitcher hitting."

Todd's opportunity came after Puerto Rico's Vaqueros had two runners thrown out at the plate in the top of the ninth inning.

Bryan Guzman tried to score for third base with one out on a ground ball, but he was thrown out at home by Blake Adams.

The next batter, Angel Lopez, hammered a single up the middle, and again, the Leach defense was up to the task as center fielder Darien Simms threw out Gamalier Gonzalez at the dish as he tried to score from second base to end the inning.

The team took turns leading early in the contest.

D-BAT put a run on the board in the bottom of the first inning.

Adams ripped an RBI double to score Noah McGowan and give the Texas squad a 1-0 lead.

Carolina answered back in the top of the second. Jose Carrasquillo, whose walk-off double knocked out Bill Hood on Tuesday, hit another double to the same spot in right field and then came around to score on a single from Juan Fuentes to tie the game at 1-1.

In the next inning, Carolina took its first lead of the game on a solo home run from catcher Angel Lopez. It was only the second home run in the CMWS.

The lead didn't last long as D-BAT answered in the bottom of the third.

Blake Wiggins knocked a one-out double to left field. Then after a walk to Adams, Travis Stone singled to left to score Wiggins. Carolina left fielder Gonzalez overran the ball, allowing Adams to also score on the play, giving D-BAT a 3-2 lead.

The Vaqueros were poised to take the lead right back in the top of the fourth inning.

A lead-off single by Esdras Navarro chased D-BAT starter Jensen Elliott from the game. Then a bunt single and sacrifice bunt against reliever Troy Chezem gave Carolina runners on second and third base with one out.

Chezem was up to the challenge though, striking out the next two Vaqueros' hitters looking to get out of the jam.

Carolina fought back to tie the game in the fifth inning with a two-out rally. Brandon Marrero reached after being hit by a pitch. And after a single by Carrasquillo, the Vaqueros third baseman scored on an RBI single by Navarro.

"They're a heck of a team. They play with a ton of energy and passion," Leach said. "They showed they can beat the good teams and deserve to be here."

Vaqueros reliever Kenny Burgos took the loss after allowing the Todd grand slam. Burgos went 3 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on three hits.

Schneider got the win in relief, throwing two-thirds of an inning.

D-BAT Leach will play Midland today at 7:30 p.m.

"As a staff, we'll have to get together and regroup. We had to use some guys that we weren't expecting today," Leach said.

Joshua Perry is the sports editor of The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577 and jperry@daily-times.com. Follow him @jperrysuu on Twitter.