Unbeaten Enid Majors get 8-2 win over Farmington Frackers in Connie Mack World Series play

Steven Bortstein
Farmington Daily Times
Enid Majors pitcher Jack Hill prepares to deliver a pitch in the fourth inning of their second round Connie Mack World Series game against the Farmington Frackers.

FARMINGTON — The Enid Majors took a big step forward, advancing to the third round of the 2021 Connie Mack World Series with a strong 8-2 victory over the Farmington Frackers.

The Majors have yet to lose a game this series, picking up their fourth in a row including two in pool play last week and a first round victory Sunday over the Dallas Patriots.

Meantime, the Frackers suffered their first loss of the tournament. They won and tied their two games during pool play, and now move to the consolation bracket, needing to win out to advance to the championship rounds.

Photos:2021 Connie Mack World Series parade in Farmington

The Majors jumped on Frackers starting pitcher Jacob Blaede early, scoring twice off back-to-back doubles hit to deep left centerfield. Ian Daugherty and Ty Hammack each drove in a run and established the Majors presence on the field in the top half of the first inning.

Blaede found trouble again in the second inning, giving up a hard infield single to Zandt Payne, who then advanced to second after an errant pickoff attempt. Kade Goeke was hit by a pitch before Bryce Logan got on board with a bunt single to the left side of the mound. All of this before the Frackers record an out in the frame.

Carson Benge drove in Goeke and Logan on a sharply hit ball that snuck by Frackers second baseman Connor Chavez, extending the Majors lead to 4-0.

The Frackers answered back in the bottom half of the second inning. Cole Dillon, the walkoff hero from Sunday night’s win over the Dallas Patriots, scored from first on a double to left centerfield off the bat of Henry Mitchell. Majors pitcher Jack Hill kept the damage to a minimum, getting Bryce Perez to pop out to shortstop Cayden Brumbaugh before Chavez grounded out to end the inning.

More:Parade in downtown Farmington welcomes 2021 Connie Mack World Series teams

Enid Majors third baseman Carson Benge waits on a pitch from Ryan Ray in Tuesday's second round Connie Mack game at Ricketts Park against the Farmington Frackers.

The Frackers found themselves in trouble again defensively in the top half of the fifth inning. After a pitching change brought Elijah Wyatt onto the mound, Enid designated hitter Zandt Payne drove in a pair of runs to extend the Majors lead to 6-1.

“We got solid performances up and down the lineup,” Majors coach Kris Webb said after the game. “That’s been the nature of our team all season long, is that on any given day it can be anyone to step up and be a big supporter.”

Meantime, Majors starting pitcher Jack Hill was putting in a gem of a performance on the hill.

Hill threw five solid innings, throwing 67 pitches and striking out four while allowing only one run on six hits.

“I felt really good coming out here,” Hill said. “Our team has been on a bit of a roll this series.”

The Frackers attempted a bit of a rally in the bottom of the fifth inning, loading the bases with none out. Raef Wright lined out to Logan, covering second base, who then stepped on the bag to force out Perez. Hill then forced a pickoff play on first base when Chavez was caught in a rundown to end the inning.

“Our defense has always been able to dig us out of holes,” Hill said. “That’s been one of the best things about these guys.”

CMWS Central:Your place to go for 2021 Connie Mack World Series scores, updates and more

Webb acknowledged the strength of his team’s defensive efforts while also recognizing there was a bit of baseball luck on his team’s side. 

“I think they (Frackers) got baseballed a little bit,” Webb said of the minimal damage done in the fifth inning. “That was a big momentum getter for us.”

Kaleb Melvin took over on the mound for the Majors in the top half of the sixth inning and promptly shut down the Frackers, striking out Kayden Voelkel and Jalen Seward to end the inning.

The Majors added a pair of runs in the 7th inning off the bat of Goeke, who drove in a pair of runs to extend the lead to 8-1.

Dillon’s second homerun of the tournament made the score 8-2 in the bottom half of the seventh before the final outs were recorded.

ALBUQUERQUE BASEBALL ACADEMY 8, DALLAS PATRIOTS 5

The Albuquerque Baseball Academy staved off elimination with an 8-5 win over the Dallas Patriots Tuesday morning at the Farmington Sports Complex.

The win assures the ABA of at least one more game on Wednesday, while the Patriots become the first team to be eliminated from the tournament.

Both teams traded blows in the first inning, with the ABA scoring four times in the top half of the inning before the Patriots countered back with three of their own.

ABA scored two more times in the fourth and fifth innings. Alex Admire scored on a fielding error by Patriots shortstop Ty Johnson before Evan Muhlberger drove in Tyson Vigil in the fourth inning. In the fifth, Admire drove in a pair of runners (Tyler Neal and Garrett Reade) to extend the ABA lead. 

The Patriots scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to narrow the gap, but the game came to an end when ABA pitcher Jordan Martinez struck out Mason Poppen to preserve the win. \

Midland first baseman Josh Overbeek gets a piece of a pitch in the second inning of their Connie Mack World Series game Monday night at Ricketts Park against the South Troy Dodgers.

Monday game recaps

D-BAT UNITED MOVING ON AFTER DRAMATIC 3-0 WIN OVER STING

Dallas' D-Bat United withstood the best punch from the Farmington Sting on Monday night during the first round of bracket play in the 2021 Connie Mack World Series at Ricketts Park.

United finally got the upper hand in the fifth inning, led by Tavion Vaughns' 2-RBI triple that gave them the lead they'd need to prevail 3-0 over the Sting and moving onto the second round in winners bracket play.

Vaughns drove in Connor McGinnis and Hudson White to put D-Bat up 2-0, providing Sting pitcher Jordan Vickers the only real blemish on what was otherwise a phenomenal performance on the mound.

Vickers threw 6 solid innings for the hometown Sting, striking out eight and surrendering only two runs on 4 hits. 

The Sting offense, on the other hand, was also silent for much of the night, able to string together only three hits off a duo of D-Bat pitchers.

Ben Abeldt struck out eight as the starter, going 3 1/3 innings and surrendering only one hit in the process. Abeldt was followed by Blake McEwan, who went the rest of the way while giving up only two hits and striking out three.

D-Bat United padded their lead in the seventh inning thanks to Whit Thomas, who got on board with a one-out double, then scored two batters later on a McGinnis single that gave them a 3-0 lead which they preserved after a scoreless bottom half of the inning.

D-Bat United will be back in action tonight at 5:15 at Ricketts Park when they face the Florida Legends, who were victorious earlier on Monday with a 4-3 win over the Colton Nighthawks.

Midland starting pitcher Devin Bennett prepares to go to the plate in the top of the second inning of their first round game in the Connie Mack World Series at Ricketts Park against the South Troy Dodgers.

MIDLAND 9, SOUTH TROY DODGERS 1

Neither rain nor lightning nor the South Troy (NY) Dodgers can slow down the Midland baseball team from their appointed rounds. 

Or at least that’s the way it appears to be shaping up for the three-time defending Connie Mack World Series champions, who made short work of their first-round opponent in Monday’s opening night of bracket play at Ricketts Park. 

Midland overcame an early 1-0 deficit, roared back to take the lead then fought off the effects of a nearly 2-hour rain delay to romp over the Dodgers by a final of 9-1 in a 5-inning, run-rule victory. 

The win advances Midland into a highly anticipated second round showdown with the Southern California Renegades Tuesday at Ricketts Park at 1 p.m. The game will be a rematch of the 2019 Connie Mack championship, in which Midland won a doubleheader to claim the 16th Connie Mack title in the history of the program. 

The Dodgers opened the scoring in the top half of the first inning, when Danny Rogers worked the basepaths after a leadoff single, then was driven in from third base after Orin Hirschkorn flew out to deep right field. 

That was the lone offensive output from the Dodgers, thanks in large part to a solid outing from Midland starting pitcher Devin Bennett, who struck out four and surrendered only that one hit and run in the first inning before being forced to exit the game after an elongated rain delay put the game on pause for nearly two hours. 

The tarp was on the field at Ricketts ParkMonday during a rain delay. The Midland vs. South Troy game was paused in the bottom of the fourth inning with Midland leading 5-1.

Before the rain and lightning put things on hold, Midland was already on a roll. 

Midland tied the game in the bottom of the second, thanks to Owen Washburn’s RBI single with two outs, plating Jacob Guiterrez. 

Midland began to open the floodgates in the third inning, scoring four times. Christian Moore’s 2-RBI single scored Trevor Conley and Boston Smith. Gutierrez continued to be a nightmare for the Dodgers when he drove in a pair of runs with a 2-out double, extending Midland’s lead to 5-1. 

“(Moore) is such an outstanding player,” coach Dave Evans said after the game of the prospect who’s recently signed on to play baseball at the University of Tennessee. “The Vols have one heck of an athlete coming to them next season. He just does it all so well, offense and defense.” 

The rain delay only seemed to hold off the inevitable outcome, but there was a sense of urgency for Midland to put the game on ice as quickly as possible, especially knowing their opponent on Tuesday afternoon. 

“You want to get out of there with as few pitches as needed,” Evans said. “The Renegades are a quality team, they’re well coached and they’re gonna give us a great game.” 

When action resumed in the bottom of the fourth inning, Midland picked up right where they left off, with both Conley and Josh Overbeek scoring off the bat of Smith, who laced a single into left field. Later that same inning, Smith would score on a fielder’s choice from shortstop Adrian O’Keefe, giving Midland a commanding 8-1 lead. 

Midland provided the finishing touch in the bottom of the fifth when Washburn drove in Avery Lee to end the game on a run-rule, 8-run victory. 

Evans was quick to point out Bennett’s performance on the hill, considering he likely would have pitched another inning had the rain not been a factor. 

“(Bennett) threw the ball really well for us, he competes so well out there,” Evans said. “We got to keep his pitch count down, so we can get him back out there sooner if need be.” 

Contact Steven Bortstein via email at sbortstein@gannett.com.

Support local journalism with a digital subscription: http://bit.ly/2I6TU0e