End of lineup has big day for Mavs in DH sweep
Andrew Martinez got off to a slow start this season, but he was never worried.
The Mesa State College senior and Central High School graduate has never been one to panic.
He kept plugging away, putting the ball in play.
Martinez found holes Friday, going 6 for 9 (.667) with three runs and five RBI to lead the third-ranked Mavericks to a doubleheader sweep of Colorado School of Mines. Mesa State defeated the Orediggers 15-3 and 18-5 at Suplizio Field. The teams finish the four-game series at noon today.
“I’ve always had a problem starting the season,” Martinez said. “It takes me a while to get going.
“I’m definitely settling in a lot more. I’m seeing good pitches and swinging at good pitches.”
Mesa State (33-5, 23-2 RMAC) is on a 15-game winning streak and has won 21 of its past 22 games.
Martinez, who was hitting .250 after the first series of the season, is now hitting .400 in the No. 9 hole.
“The bottom of the lineup is like another leadoff,” he said. “When guys are drawing walks and getting hits in front of you, you see a lot of fastballs.”
Martinez came up to bat in the bottom of the second inning of the first game with two runners on in a 1-1 game and delivered a RBI double to right field to give the Mavericks the lead for good.
He scored on a Kevin Becker single in the five-run inning.
Martinez added a two-run single in the fifth inning, but he wasn’t the only one in the bottom part of the lineup to produce. The Mavericks’ 6-9 hitters were a combined 8 for 11 with six RBI in the first game.
Marty Rover, Chase Moore and Blake Carlquist each had two hits for the Mavericks.
They alone produced enough offense for starting pitcher Chris Carma (7-1), who limited Mines (6-28, 3-18 RMAC), three runs on six hits and struck out six in five innings.
Rover, Austin Buck and Martinez continued producing in the bottom of the lineup in the second game, going a combined 7 for 11 with eight RBI and five walks.
Martinez started the offense in the second inning of the second game with a RBI single and scored on a Becker two-run double.
Buck ignited the offense in the nine-run third inning with a two-run triple and scored on Martinez’s single. Justin Little doubled home Martinez.
That allowed Kevin Chritz to make his first appearance since March 3. Although he gave up two runs and three walks, he was able to overcame control problems to through his one inning.
Starter Jason Fronczak (6-0) allowed three runs on five hits in four innings.
Matt Bodenchuk added a two-run home run in the fourth for a 15-3 lead, but the bottom part of the lineup produced more offense in the sixth with Rover’s first home run of the season, a three-run shot in the seventh inning.
“That’s the thing,” Bodenchuk said. “The bottom of our lineup is like most teams’ middle lineup.
We expected that from those guys. Andrew is there for a reason. He’d hit second or third for anyone else.”