Texarkana Twins manager Brandon Schmidt was making no excuses Thursday after watching his team get swept in a three-game series at home against the Amarillo Sod Dogs.
Five Texarkana pitchers combined for 16 walks, which played a big role in Amarillo’s 12-5 win over the Twins. The Sod Dogs outscored Texarkana, 33-9 in the series.
“Amarillo has been together a little longer than us, but that still doesn’t make up for us not competing,” said Schmidt. “We’re not competing in the zone, and we’re not doing anything very well on the mound right now.
“I thought (Ty) Hoeker pitched well the first three innings, and was hopeful he could get us to the fifth. However, his pitch count got to him. Going forward we’re going to have to find guys who can go in and throw strikes.”
Schmidt pleased with two batters
The Twins were better at the plate. Jake Slunder, a Murray State senior, had a double, two singles and scored twice. Cameron Dollar continued to swing a hot bat with a double and two singles.
Seven of Texarkana’s 11 hits came after a spectacular fireworks show in the middle of the fifth inning. The Sod Dogs led 6-1 at that point.
Tyler Trovinger had a run-scoring double for the Twins in the eighth. Two batters later catcher Charlie Welch delivered a two-run single. Pleasant Grove graduate Seth Hopkins, Reed Spenrath, and Zach Slunder also contributed singles.
“If you kick the ball around, walk sixteen, you’re not going to win very often,” said Schmidt. “We’ve got to limit the walks and the baserunners. The main thing now is for us to get back to .500. Once we win a game I think the guys will start the settle in, and you’ll see better swings.”
Sod Dogs had 32 baserunners Thursday
Amarillo didn’t necessary need all the free passes. The Sod Dogs had 12 hits of their own. Batting ninth in the order, catcher Johnny Pappas reached base six times with three singles. Mack Chambers and Matthew Garcia had two hits each, while Terrell Hudson walked five times.
Amarillo (Sod Dogs) is the only unbeaten team in the Texas Collegiate League after Thursday’s games.
The Amarillo Sod Squad lost their first game to San Antonio, 11-5; Round Rock beat defending TCL champion Brazos Valley, 10-3; Tulsa edged Frisco, 2-1; and Victoria slipped past Acadiana, 7-6.
Texarkana is back at George Dobson Field Friday against the Tulsa Drillers at 7:05 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN Texarkana (94.1 FM), or Fox Sports Texarkana (97.1 FM and 1400 AM).