Baseball: Beit Shemesh stays undefeated, Petah Tikva loses third in a row

Grand slam by catcher Scott Jarmakowicz gives Blue Sox lead; Tigers clobber Pioneers at Yarkon.

Baseball Tigers 298.88 (photo credit: Efrat Sa'ar)
Baseball Tigers 298.88
(photo credit: Efrat Sa'ar)
The Beit Shemesh Blue Sox maintained their undefeated record, beating the Ra'anana Express 10-7 at Gezer on Thursday with a grand slam and a bases-loaded triple. But the game ended in dissapointing fashion after bad light stopped play for the second time this week with one and a half innings left to play. Catcher Scott Jarmakowicz hit the grand slam, left fielder Mike Lyons added a three-run triple and first baseman Johnny Lopez had a two-run home run. Ra'anana was countered with a two-run double by third-baseman Brendan Rubenstein and a two-run home run by catcher Juan Ramirez. Beit Shemesh remained the only undefeated team in the IBL. The small but dedicated crowd of around 250 were treated to an exciting game. Ra'anana had a vocal cheering section. The game started in Ra'anana's favor, when right fielder Matt Castillo hit a leadoff home run and center fielder John Toussas had an RBI double. They emerged from the first inning up 3-0. But it only took a grand slam by Jarmakowicz to give Beit Shemesh a lead it wouldn't relinquish. Lyons hit a bases-loaded triple the next inning. "I just saw a fastball and put some wood on it," he said. "I knew I could make three when I saw the throw was a little high." Ra'anana turned the 8-3 deficit to 8-7 from a two-RBI double from Rubenstein and Ramirez's two-run homer. But Beit Shemesh got a two-run shot of their own, from Lopez, his fourth of the young season. Ra'anana got the tying run on the plate the next inning, but could not convert. Tigers 7, Pioneers 1 The Netanya Tigers routed the Petah Tikva Pioneers 7-1 at Yarkon Field in Petah Tikvah on Thursday night, a third consecutive defeat for Petah Tikva. The game was already out of hand for Petah Tikva as the team fell well behind 5-0 by the second inning, suffering their third consecutive loss in front of just 75 fans. Despite the poor start to the season, Pioneers manager Ken Holtzman remained positive. "We are not going to quit because of an 0-3 start," he said. "Last time I checked we play a 45 game season." The Netanya batters drove in seven runs marked by a three run rally in the first inning winning the confidence of their manager Ami Baran. Petah Tikva wasted a golden opportunity in the fourth inning with bases loaded, by weakly popping out to first base ending any threat. In a meeting with his players after the game, Holtzman criticized his teams' batters for a lack of confidence at the plate that caused this crucial popup. The game was noteworthy for both teams' sloppy play with numerous infield dropped balls and wild pitches. Tuesday's results: Beit Shemesh 10, Ra'anana 7; Netanya 7, Petah Tikva 1. Wednesday's games: Petah Tikva at Ra'anana (10 a.m. at Yarkon Field); Netanya vs Tel Aviv (12 p.m. at Gezer Field.) WLPctGB Beit Shemesh401.000- Tel Aviv21.66711⁄2 Netanya11.5002 Modi'in12.33321⁄2 Ra'anana12.33321⁄2 Petah Tikva03.00031⁄2