Falling to St. Joe the night before in a tight contest, Plymouth coach Ryan Wolfe was interested to see how his team would react. He got his answer as his team pounded out 12 hits and gave up only three, while getting a look at some players in different situations.
“All around, we did a lot of good things,” said Wolfe. “That pitcher (Rochester left hander Carter Hooks) is good and I thought we were patient and squared some balls up there in the third and fourth inning.”
Cam Dennie led the way with three hits including a triple; Ezra Winkle had a pair of hits and RBIs; Benji Nixon had a three-run triple as part of a two-hit night; and Elijah Allmon came off the bench for a pair of hits.
“We talked to Winkle on the bus ride on the way over,” said Wolfe. “We’ve seen a few things over the past couple games, he’s pulling his front shoulder. We tell him, ‘hey just hit the ball over the second baseman’s head’ and what does he do tonight? He stays on the ball. We want to pound the right field screen. That’s exactly where we want to hit the ball. If we can stay in that left center, right center gap that’s what we want to do.”
“A lot of our guys’ approaches were right up the middle,” said Wolfe. “Very good swings right up the middle let the ball travel a little deeper with guys not throwing as hard. We just had a lot of good approaches at the plate.”
Meanwhile, Grant Stukenborg took the mound for the first time in the season – more importantly, for the first time after a severe injury suffered pitching for Plymouth American Legion Post 27 in Omaha, when he was hit in the face with a line drive.
“I remember spending six hours in a hospital in Nebraska,” said Wolfe. “After something like that, you can be timid. He put in tremendous work in over the winter. He wants to win.
“We have a lot of depth in our pitching staff. These first three outings, we had guys go out there who just wanted the ball. Stuke didn’t want to come out of there tonight, but I wanted to see Cole (Filson) a little bit. Our goal here early is to see a lot of guys in a lot of positions in a lot of situations.”
Base running also came to the front with the Pilgrims able to put pressure on the defense with their aggressiveness.
“We also saw some guys go first to third and first to home on a lot of base hits, and that’s just shows you our athleticism,” said Wolfe. “We can hit a ball in the gap and score, or take an extra base and that puts a lot of pressure on the defense.”
Plymouth (2-1) plays Triton at Bill Nixon Field Thursday night.
Plymouth 10, Rochester 2
Plymouth 0 3 1 6 0 0 0 10-12-2
Rochester 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 2-3-2
WP – Grant Stukenborg. LP – Carter Hooks. 3B – Benji Nixon (P), Cam Dennie (P). 2B – Ezra Winkle (P), Brady Perez (R).