Team Easton 7, Arizona Angels 3
‘Vertes Throws and Hits Team Easton to Title”
By Steve LaMontia, Director of Communications
Maryvale Stadium, Phoenix, Saturday, November 8, 2014…Team Easton skipper Chris Cotone has been bringing this Los Angeles based powerhouse to the MSBL World Series for six years, hoping for the magic tonic to put them over the top. The potion this year came in the form of Drew Vertes, who threw a complete game on the hill while compiling a four for four day at the plate on the way to a 7-3 victory over the Arizona Angels in the finals of the 35+ aluminum bat division.
“I was a little tired after throwing 35 innings this week but my slider was definitely the ‘go to’ pitch today,” explained MVP Vertes. “I threw against them in the round-robin play and it was pretty much the same result. I remembered where most of these guys hit and my catcher, Keith Omrod, did a great job of calling the right pitches.”
Vertes held on to a 1-0 lead going into their bottom of the sixth inning and then the Easton bats came alive and placed a six spot on the Angels, with a little help from the Angels defense and two hit batsmen by Angels pitcher Jimmy Balian, who had been pitching toe to toe with Vertes up until that fateful inning.Team Easton scored their six runs on only three hits, but one of the hits was a grand slam home run over the left-center wall at Maryvale Stadium by outfielder Tony Arrenz.
The Angels came right back with a run in the seventh and two more in the eighth but it wasn’t enough as Vertes had just enough left in the tank to make their 7-3 edge hold up in the ninth. Vertes lead the offensive charge with a four for four day, while second baseman Jeff Parsons chipped in a three for four day. Brian Slutsky and Keith Omrod added a couple of two for four days to the mix.
Manager Chris Cotone was finally able to claim his first ring as Team Easton Skipper. “Drew Vertes is an absolute animal,” said Cotone. “He threw four games this week and is amazing at the plate, too. He is the heart of this baseball team. He is our Madison Bumgarner.” Cotone reflected further on his team’s great run this week. “Every player on this team played a role, from Steven Dean, our pool play MVP, top to bottom, every guy contributed. Who would have thought that our number nine guy, Tony Arrenz, would come up so big at exactly the right time. These guys are all amazing.”
Chris Cotone’s mom was waiting for him on the concourse above the seats. “Chris has wanted this moment so badly. He has worked so hard for this,” she said. “I am so happy for him and for the whole team. This is really special to Chris.”