Winter Park Diamond Dawgs' streak snaps in Sanford

Dawgs dig out

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  • | 8:13 a.m. June 25, 2015
Photo by: Isaac Babcock - Josh DeBacker may be the Dawgs' best bat at .385, but he also pitched three innings of one-hit, shutout ball last weekend.
Photo by: Isaac Babcock - Josh DeBacker may be the Dawgs' best bat at .385, but he also pitched three innings of one-hit, shutout ball last weekend.
  • Winter Park - Maitland Observer
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Winter Park was on a four-game roll before they rolled into Sanford on Tuesday. They left with a 10-0 blowout loss that was cut short on a mercy rule.

Winter Park’s Trevor Tinder looked on his way to dealing the Sanford River Rats a loss as he struck out seven in five innings of two-run ball before being pulled ahead of the bottom of the sixth. Two relievers later, the Dawgs had a rout to contend with, allowing eight runs in what would be the final two innings of the game after the umpires called it early.

Meanwhile Sanford’s Burris Warner cruised to the win on a two-hit, five-inning start. The Diamond Dawgs were held to only three hits in the game. Two of them were courtesy of center fielder Daniel Woodrow, who tried to manufacture his own run with a stolen base, only to be stalled by Winter Park’s fizzling bats.

The game was a huge nosedive for the Dawgs, who had started a four-game winning streak with two blowout wins dominating the Altamonte Springs Boom and Winter Garden Squeeze with a combined run differential of 22-7. Two nail-biter one-run wins later, the Dawgs were owners of the longest winning streak in the Florida Collegiate Summer League.

And in the middle of it all, Dawgs outfielder Josh DeBacker, who already had the league’s third best batting average on the season, compiled a .700 on-base percentage for the week, then pitched three innings of relief, striking out four and only giving up a hit.

But after Tuesday, the Dawgs are left picking up the pieces after suffering the losing end of the biggest shutout loss any team has seen this season.

The result of that game was the end to a gradual ladder climb the Dawgs had been on for the past week, where they hauled themselves up from being half a game out of last place, and had tied with the Leesburg Lightning (now 7-5) for third in the FCSL. They’re back down to fourth, a precarious game and a half ahead of the DeLand Suns, who have lost five games in a row.

Meanwhile the Boom have been blowing away the league in their very first season, with a 9-3 record that’s outpaced the batting- and pitching-heavy River Rats (9-4) by a game so far.

The Boom are riding a four-game win streak featuring two shutouts and an 18-3 blasting of Leesburg in which so many Boom players drove in a run that first baseman Cody Henry came a triple short of hitting for the cycle and that was only good enough for a four-way tie for third place in RBI in the game. By the time the game was over, the Lightning had used six pitchers and two of them left with an ERA in double digits.

Even the Winter Garden Squeeze, who started the season with a win and have gone on to lose the next 11 games, haven’t suffered a rout that big this season. They came within a run of breaking their streak twice in the last week, but couldn’t edge the Dawgs or the Rats to get there.

Every team had a late game Wednesday at press time, but the Dawgs are home at 7 p.m. Thursday for a showdown with the Boom, who are expecting to put the league ace, Devin Raftery, on the mound. Friday the Dawgs are home again against the Boom, with Zac Rogers — not to be confused with UCF pitching ace Zach Rodgers — on the mound.

For the Rats, they’ll be hosting Leesburg at 7 p.m. Thursday, and going back-to-back with Leesburg in Sanford again at 7 p.m. Friday.


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