Torrington Titans drop 10-1 decision to Nashua in home opener.
Torrington Mayor, Ryan Bingham, throws out the first pitch before the Torrington Titans home opener. The Titans lost to Nashua by a 10-1 score.
TORRINGTON-Everything went off as planned Friday night as the 2011 Torrington Titans took the field for the first time in front of their home fans.
A hardy crowd of 445 was on hand to see the inaugural Futures League baseball game which featured plenty of pre-game, mid-game and after game entertainment.
The concession stand was hopping, the air was warm and it was a great night for baseball.
Except for one thing; someone forgot to tell Nashua starting pitcher, Eric Perrault (freshman, Keene State University) that a home win would have topped the night nicely.
Perrault threw seven innings of one run, three hit ball in his teams opening game.
At Keene State, Perrault was in the bullpen and when Silver Knights manager, Mike Chambers decided to give him the ball in his team opener, he didn’t really know what to expect.
“Eric battles out there,” Chambers said, “We were only going to throw him 70 pitches but we are pleased we got seven full innings.”
The Silver Knights got on the board fast against Torrington starter, Kevin Bartlett in the top of the second when James Katsirouba launched a long double to the base of the center field wall for an RBI.
Katsirouba was thrown out trying to stretch the double into a triple on a fine relay from Rich Graef in center to cut-off man Jacob Hunter to Kyle Murphy at third.
The Titans would tie things with their lone run of the night in the bottom of the frame.
Two walks put runners on second and third with one out before designated hitter, Steve Ferraro lined a single down the leftfield line, scoring Kyle Murphy from second.
Both runners moved up to second and third with tow outs on an errant throw from the Nashua leftfielder but the runners were left stranded.
There was not a lot of noise from the Titans after that inning, a walk would be erased on a double play in the fourth and only two more runners would reach second the rest of the night.
Rest is probably a good idea for a most certainly tired baseball team after a two hour, forty minute rain delay got them underway the night before just before nine and back in Torrington by about 4 a.m.
Getting used to long bus rides and early mornings after games have been introduced to the team at an early stage.
Manager Gregg Hunt thought his team was a bit worn down from the night before.
“They hit some balls real hard but right back to the pitcher early,” Hunt said, “That was a rough trip on Thursday night and we played tired.”
Bartlett limited the damage done after a long home run by Matt Jacobs leading off the top of the fourth and kept his team close at 3-1 until the wheels came off in the top of the sixth when the Silver Knights scored four runs to go up 7-1.
Joey Dinino, a graduate of Avon Old Farms School in Avon, took the mound for the first time in a year in relief of Bartlett and while the line didn’t look good (2 plus innings, three runs on three hits) live work was needed.
“Joey hasn’t pitched in a year,” Hunt said, “He can’t work things out in the bullpen, he’s got to be in games. We would have liked for it to go a little better but he got back out there.”
Minucci ended the night as the hitting star for the visitors with a 4-for-4 night with a run scored and three driven in.
Andrew LeBlanc, a returning pitcher from the 2010 team, pitched a one, two, three ninth and looked good.
At the plate for Torrington, Rich Graef and Josh Simms had the other two hits.
Graef also showed off his speed in center on a couple of well hit balls behind him that he caught up to.
NOTES: The Titans and Silver Knights will meet up on Saturday for a scheduled contest in New Hampshire. Connor McMahon will be on the hill for Torrington with LeBlanc getting the ball on Sunday when Torrington heads to Seacoast to take on the Mavericks. Torrington will be back home on Monday to take on these same Silver Knights at Fuessenich Park at 7 p.m.