Baseball may not be an exact science, but there certainly isn't much wiggle room when you're talking about the difference between a double down the line and a ground out to first -- a game of inches, so to speak.
The American Legion Post 20 Twins were just a little off the mark Thursday, dropping the front end of their doubleheader 10-0 to the visiting Fairbanks Tri-Cities 49'ers at Coral Seymour Memorial Park.
The 49'ers continued to be timely with their hitting through the second game of the afternoon, downing the Twins 9-5.
"That's the difference in baseball, as in all games," said Twins manager Lance Coz. "We hit some balls hard, but they were straight at people."
The 49'ers, meanwhile, were right on their game in the opener. Every ball put into play seemed to find its way to a spot the Twins defense couldn't quite get to, and Fairbanks starter David Coldiron had good command of his pitches through all nine -- even throwing in an occasional knuckleball -- to pick up the win.
"We're finally playing up to our potential now," said Fairbanks manager Billy Smith. "We had one error, but that's to be expected over the course of nine innings. We played good."
Tri-Cities struck for a pair of runs on three hits in the second, two more runs on three hits in the third, and three runs on three hits in the fifth. The 49'ers added a run on one hit in the seventh and two runs on two hits in the ninth.
Twins pitcher Danny Bookey pitched nine innings in the loss.
"Bookey was not as efficient as he usually is -- it could be that he had too many days off," Coz said. "They're a good efficient ball club. If you let them see the same guy too much, they're going to figure him out."
The 49'ers roughed up Twins starter Norton Dablemont for five runs on five hits in the first inning.
Post 20 recovered with two runs in the second and two more in the third inning to draw to within a run.
Brad Burck led off the second inning with a walk, advanced on two ground ball outs and scored on a wild pitch.
Dominic Plasencia followed with a two-out single, moved up on a single by Justin Payment and a walk by Cory Janson and scored on a walk by David Newby.
Burck drew a one-out walk in the third inning, advanced on a single by J.D. Pault and scored on a sacrifice fly by Kenneth Butler.
Pault scored on a single by Plasencia.
The Twins matched the 49'ers in the fifth inning as each team plated a run, but the Tri-Cities side scored two runs in the sixth and another in the seventh to secure the win.
The Twins will be back in action at Coral Seymour Memorial Park Saturday and Sunday. The Twins host Service on Saturday and Dimond on Sunday, both doubleheaders. Game time on both days is 12:30 p.m.
49'ERS 10, TWINS 0
Tri-Cities 022 030 102 -- 10 12 1
Post 20 000 000 000 -- 0 3 3
Coldiron and Walker; Bookey and Evanson. W -- Coldiron. L -- Bookey. 2B -- 49'ers, Milliken 2, Cox. LOB -- 49'ers 8, Twins 8.
49'ERS 9, TWINS 5
Tri-Cities 500 102 1 -- 9 11 2
Post 20 022 100 0 -- 5 5 2
Wilson, Shaver (5) and Lear; Dablemont, Bird (3), Payment (6) and Butler. W -- Shaver. L -- Dablemont. 2B -- 49'ers, Grubich. 3B -- 49'ers, Shaver. LOB -- 49'ers 4, Twins 6.
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