Farmer plowing through post-season baseball
After two innings last Thursday, De Soto starting pitcher Tyler Farmer had already faced 16 batters, given up six hits, walked three batters, and thrown 62 pitches.
In other words, Farmer had already had a full day and still trailed Shawnee Mission West 8-0 De Soto's entry in the senior league of the Johnson County 3 and 2 Baseball Assn. But Riley Pierce did what good catchers are supposed to do: He informed Farmer of what he was doing wrong.
"Riley told me I wasn't following through," Farmer said. "Once I started to do that, my pitching form came back."
The De Soto High School sophomore-to-be then settled in and pitched 3-1/3 scoreless innings and allowed his teammates to crawl back into the game.
During that time span, Farmer faced 15 batters, gave up three hits, and walked two hitters. But more importantly, he didn't allow any Viking base runners to advance past second base.
De Soto pulled within three runs of the Vikings in the third inning when they scored five runs. At one point in the inning, the Wildcats had five consecutive hits.
Before they were out of the inning, the Wildcats batted through the lineup, stroked out five hits, and walk twice.
The Wildcats came close to narrowing the gap even more in the fourth inning.
Jake Bosnak led off the top half of the inning with a five-pitch walk. Third baseman James Ingalls then sacrificed him over to second with a bunt.
After Huston Noe advanced Bosnak to third with a grounder to the pitcher, Colby Childers ripped a shot to deep center field.
Unfortunately for the Wildcats, Viking center fielder Blake Lawrence was there, and he leaped into the wall, making the catch and ending the inning.
"We figured Colby's hit was going to go over his head," Farmer said. "I think it stopped any momentum we may have had at that point."
The Wildcats were able to pull within one more run in the sixth inning when Taylor Burnett scored on a passed ball.
Burnett reached base when he high-hopped a single up the middle with one out and nobody on in the inning. The junior-to-be then stole second and took third on a bad throw to second. He came home on an 0-1 pitch.
Farmer started to feel the effects of his two long innings when he took the mound in the sixth inning, having thrown 118 pitches in the game. So Childers was brought in for relief.
But by the time Childers could get warmed up, the game was called because of the two-hour time limit, ending the Wildcats rally.
header split with Blue Valley North.
He was 4-for-4 in the opening game 11-4 win over North. In that game, he crushed a double and ripped two triples for nine total bases and a 2.250 slugging percentage.
"They were throwing fast balls, and I was seeing the ball really well," Farmer said. "I was really happy because that was our first game and we got off to such a great start."
In that game, De Soto pounded out 13 hits and had four batters walk.
Aaron Hanson and Kenny Price added to the balanced De Soto lineup by dishing out two hits apiece. Pierce scored three runs for the Wildcats.
Blue Valley North contributed four errors to the cause.
De Soto returned the favor by committing four errors in the nightcap, as the Huskies earned the split with a 20-3 blowout, dropping the Wildcats' record to 1-1 at that point in the season.
Blue Valley North scored a run in the first inning, five more in the second, five in the third, five in the fourth, and four in the fifth.
De Soto scored two runs in the first inning and added another one in the second frame.
Pierce was able to put together a couple of hits in the second game of the season.
"I think we've made improvements every game," Farmer said of how the young season has progressed so far. "Now we just have to keep doing that."
The Wildcats (1-2) play a single game against the Raider Baseball Club at 6:30 p.m. Thursday on Field 2.
2 -- 2 -- 2 -- 0 -- 0 -- 4 -- 1 11
0 -- 0 -- 2 -- 0 -- 2 -- 0 -- 0 4
2 -- 1 -- 0 - 0 -- 0 -- 0 -- 0 3
1 -- 5 -- 5 -- 5 -- 4 -- 0 -- 0 20
0 -- 0 -- 5 -- 0 -- 0 -- 1 6
3 -- 5 -- 0 -- 0 -- 0 -- 0 8