Streamwood pitcher Chad Caminitti may have beat up the scoreboard on Thursday with his first home run in the Sabres' 12-2 win against St. Charles North.
OK maybe he just dented it slightly, according to Sabres' coach Ryan Lasorta, but if the scoreboard had a mind of its own and saw Caminitti after Streamwood's 7-1 Upstate Eight River win over Elgin, it would feel justified as the junior pitcher looked banged up in his own right.
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Ice bags were in full force on his elbow and shoulder after he earned his first varsity win in Elgin by going the distance and giving up just 1 run on 7 hits while walking 2 and striking out 4. Caminitti induced 9 groundouts and had 20 first-pitch strikes in the process while also helping his cause by going 2-for-4 at the plate with a double and 2 runs scored, including the essential game-winner on an RBI single in the first inning.
"It's good to get it off my chest, that's the big thing," Caminitti said of the win. "The first inning, I kind of missed that groundball and gave up a run. I went into my own zone and I was just like 'I want this game,' so I went out and got it."
Streamwood tallied 2 runs in the first, which started with Eric Hamlin getting drilled in the back of helmet on the first pitch. Hamlin was fine. But when it was Caminitti's turn in the bottom of the frame, he had to escape out of two jams. First he loaded the bases on 3-straight hits and allowed a run to cross when Kiko Mari grounded one to third and Issac Narayan scored on the 6-3 putout. Then he walked another batter to load the bases again, but Michael Smith and Ramon Saldivar turned a 4-6-3 double play on Nicholas Turner's grounder to end the Elgin (4-11, 3-9) threat.
"He got out of a big jam there for us and I think the guys fed off that," Lasorta said. "Chad was able to kind of keep giving them some chances and the defense made some plays behind him."
From that point on, Caminitti kept the ball low and used more of his off-speed pitches, inducing more groundball outs in the process and glove work from his defense.
On the flip side, Elgin's defense committed 4 errors and Streamwood (3-11, 3-9) scored runs off those in the second, fifth and sixth.
"We took advantage of errors on the basepaths and that's something we're strong with as a team," said Caminitti.
Michael Smith was 3-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. His single in the third made it a 4-1 Streamwood. That scored Kevin Sodja, who was courtesy running for Caminitti after Caminitti had lined a double. Michael Murawski and Jeff Weaver were both 2-for-4 as Streamwood rang up 12 hits, 6 on losing pitcher Dean Anderson, who was plucked after 4 innings of work. He gave up 4 earned runs.
It looked as if Anderson was going to get run support after Elgin's first 3 batters reached base, but the Maroons managed just 2 hits thereafter.
"We weren't focused today," said Maroons skipper David Foerster, whose team was coming off a dramatic come-from-behind win over Larkin on Thursday night and preparing to play the Royals in a 10 a.m. doubleheader at Trout Park today.
"I challenged them before the game because I didn't think they were ready to go during our warm-up session, our pregame, and it carried over to the field and Streamwood took it to us. Give credit to them. We were pretty sloppy.
"At this point in the season it's inexcusable. We left some runs out there. Who knows what could have happened differently if we had (scored), could have been a different game, momentum could have shifted right then and there."
Ryan Sitter was 2-for-3 with a double for Elgin.