FARMINGTON — Previously on the brink of an early exit at the Connie Mack World Series, Phenom Texas’ bats found new life.
Phenom Texas, playing in its first-ever CMWS tournament, has scored a combined 20 runs since being knocked down to the consolation side of the bracket.
“It’s awesome, man,” first baseman Michael Difiore said. “If we get two, three-plus hitters on the bag, then we’re good. Pass it on: one hit at a time, every time. We’re getting in hitters counts, 2-1, 3-1. Once we get into those hitters counts, we’re set.”
Phenom Texas overcame a 7-0 deficit Tuesday against Cheyenne Post 6 and won 8-7. After building a cozy 5-0 lead against Frozen Ropes-Thornton today, Phenom opened the floodgates with a seven-run outburst in the top of the seventh to win 12-3.
Near the end of pool play and in the first round of the championship bracket, Phenom Texas struggled to string together key hits, let alone runs, on a consistent basis. Phenom Texas scored just nine combined runs on Saturday and Sunday.
Of course, what’s happening in consolation play is a far cry from how the weekend unfolded.
Batters are ripping in that quick single up the middle, crushing that two-run single or two-run double. They’re getting on base in bunches, and they’re scoring in bunches.
“Whenever we have runners in scoring position, I have all the confidence in the world in all of my hitters. We get a lot of two-out hits, (which) we get a lot of runs (from),” said third baseman and leadoff hitter Grant Lake. “You get on base, then it builds the hitter’s confidence up a lot.”
Phenom Texas is alive and well so far, and it looks to keep stringing together key at-bats to stay alive to the end.
“It’s a good time to start rolling,” Lake said.
Matt Hollinshead covers sports for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577 or on Twitter at @MattH_717.