Hops welcome first-round pick, Pavin Smith, but fall to Boise 5-1
It was a bittersweet arrival to Hillsboro for three Diamondback draftees Friday night, as the hometown Hops fell victim to their own defensive blunders en route to a 5-1 defeat at the hands of the Boise Hawks.
Boise starting pitcher Breiling Eusebio flummoxed Hop hitters, throwing seven scoreless innings, allowing a single hit, while striking out eight and walking two. Hillsboro starter Tyler Keele held his own, lasting five innings, allowing just two hits, striking out nine, and walking two without allowing an earned run. Unfortunately for Keele his defense committed five errors – four in the second inning – and spotted the Hawks a lead that the Hops could never catch-up to.
Arizona first round and seventh pick overall, Pavin Smith from the University of Virginia, made his professional debut in the game and was joined by shortstop Camden Duzenack from Dallas-Baptist and University of Oregon catcher Tim Susnara. Smith, who was considered arguably the top hitter in this year's draft, struggled at the plate in his debut, going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. Duzenack finished 1-for-3 with an eighth inning single, and Susnara didn't see action in the game.
After a scoreless first inning, Boise broke the ice in the second. The Hawks put runners on the corners with one out following a Daniel Jipping walk and Danny Edgeworth base hit. Then, with Aubrey McCarty at the plate, Keele threw wildly to first on a pickoff attempt, allowing Jipping to score the game's first run. Shortly thereafter, Sam Tidaback hit a hard ground ball to Duzenback at short which ate the rookie up, allowing Edgeworth to score and giving Boise a 2-0 lead.
In the third inning, after two quick outs, Jisping reached base on a Duzenback throwing error, which proved particularly costly due to Edgeworth taking the next pitch over the fence in right field to extend the lead to 4-0. At that point the Hawks had just two hits, but with help from four Hillsboro errors had parlayed those hits into four unearned runs.
Eusebio did his thing from there and it wasn't until he was replaced by Mike Bunal in the eighth that the Hops got anything going.
Connor Owings got it started with a one-out single to right field, then Duzenack's double down the left field line put runners on second and third before Billy Endris' groundout to second base scored Owings to make it 5-1. Bryan Araiza struck out to end the inning and the Hops went quietly in the ninth.
The loss was the third consecutive for Hillsboro and dropped their record to 4-5, while the Hawks improved to 5-4. The two teams are scheduled to play tomorrow night at 7:05 PM and 6:05 PM Sunday. Both game times were moved back two hours due to the near 100-degree temperatures forecasted for the weekend.