Blue Devils win big

McDonald bests Badger, 9-1, behind freshman pitcher

Tribune Chronicle / Brian Yauger Logan Shields of McDonald slides into third base in the sixth inning Tuesday as Badger’s Timothy Steh is late with the tag. McDonald won, 9-1.

McDONALD — With freshman Ty Tamburro on the mound for the Blue Devils, McDonald took down Badger, 9-1, Tuesday afternoon at Woodland Park.

“That team swings a little bit,” McDonald coach Bill Ifft said. “Ty Tamburro did an excellent job throwing as a freshman. We were worried that we were running a little low on pitching, we’re saving them a bit for the tournament and the kid was a warrior out there for us, seven innings, about 90 pitches or so and I’m very proud of him.”

Those who have kept track of McDonald baseball this season are quite familiar with the Tamburro name. Both Ty and Anthony have impressed this season. Ty Tamburro pitched a complete game for the Blue Devils with nine strikeouts and zero walks.

“Ty can swing it,” Ifft said. “His brother (Anthony) ain’t bad either. He hasn’t played baseball in six years, our first baseman. Kid comes out and he’s batting like .600. He gets like two or three hits a game.”

Despite the huge win, Ifft still sees room to improve. The Blue Devils had some early-season sloppiness, making four errors.

Tribune Chronicle / Brian Yauger Ty Tamburro pitches the ball in McDonald’s 9-1 victory over Badger Tuesday.

“We struggled in the field a little bit,” Ifft said. “We have to clean that up a little bit because when we get into league play we can’t do that stuff. I’m happy. I’m happy with today’s game and you’re always happy when you win.”

Little mistakes added up and hurt the young Braves team that made three errors on the night.

“That’s a pretty good team over there,” Braves coach Bill Hamilton said. “I think they’re going to do some real damage this year, they’re pretty solid. We had a lot of guys out of position, we only had nine guys able to play today so we didn’t have a whole lot of guys to choose from.

“A couple guys on the bench would have helped us out in this game. We had seven guys that were playing out of position today. I think that and the inability to score with runners on base is what really did us in.”

The Blue Devils capitalized on those mistakes, grabbing multiple extra bases whenever they could. McDonald wound up with a total of 10 stolen bases. Catcher Tanner Matig stole four bases during the game.

“Our third base coach did a nice job small-balling them a little bit,” Ifft said. “I have a great coaching staff, these guys do a great job with those kids. We have a good group of kids and I think we can do some damage down the road.”

Things don’t get any easier for Badger as their next opponent is a conference matchup against Grand Valley.

“They’re going to be a tough one,” Hamilton said. “They knocked Champion out of the tournament last year. They’re a solid team.”

McDonald also squares off against a conference opponent, taking on Waterloo in a two-game series.

“I haven’t heard a whole lot about them, you don’t hear too much about them down south,” Ifft said. “We played them last year and they’re competitive. Our whole league is competitive so we’ll find out when we get there. I’ll have to look at GameChanger and see how they’re doing.”