By Josh Feldman
Armada third baseman Ryan Lehr blasted a solo homerun, catcher David Parrish added a three RBI double, and Norm Hutchins’ RBI single scored five runs for Long Beach – all in the first inning. The Armada (3-1) thumped the Outlaws 11-5 at Nettleton Stadium in Chico in front of more than 4,000 paid attendees on Friday night.
SP Dusty Gober (1-0) earned the win, giving up five earned runs on four hits in 5 IP while recording five strikeouts and walking five and hitting two batters. Gober, the reigning GBL Rookie Pitcher of the Year, made his first start of 2008. By the time he took the ball in the bottom of the first, Long Beach led 5-0, a lead they would never surrender.
All nine Armada hitters batted in the five-run Top 1. After RF Chris Klemm singled to score CF Steve Moss in the second inning, Chico added runs in the second and fourth for a 6-2 score.
1B Norm Hutchins finished the night with three RBI, including a two-run homerun in the fifth inning to put the fleet up 8-2 and chase Outlaws SP Rudy Quinonez from the game. Quinonez allowed eight earned runs on seven hits in 5 IP and finished with four strikeouts, four walks and one hit batter.
The Outlaws (0-5) rallied for three runs in the bottom of the fifth. Chico DH Todd Gossage, son of Hall of Fame reliever Goose Gossage, anchored the frame with a two RBI double. The Outlaws never got closer than the 8-5 score after the fifth inning.
Relief pitching slammed the door on the Outlaws, as four pitchers each threw a scoreless inning. Nick Bierbrodt retired the side in the sixth inning. Justin Segal only faced three hitters in the seventh and induced a 6-4-3 double-play ground ball from SS Petie Montero to 2B Cleatus Davidson to Hutchins to close the frame. Sean Buller and Nick Cavanaugh pitched one-two-three innings in the eighth and ninth, respectively, to finish the Outlaws.
Rik Currier will make his 2008 debut Friday night when he starts for the Armada. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm, and the game can be heard live via internet broadcast at www.longbeacharmada.com.