Mike Barsotti '12, Named NESCAC Pitcher of the Week, & Brett Yarusi '12 Throw Gems as Baseball Splits Twin-Bill at Bowdoin, Then Downs Elms in Home Opener

Brett Yarusi '12 (#26, photo insert lower right) gave up just three hits and no earned runs over six innings with five strikeouts and three walks as he picked up the pitching victory over Bowdoin, 2-1, during a seven-inning opener of the double-header at Bowdoin Sat., March 31, to inaugurate the Cardinals' northern schedule.  Mike Barsotti '12 (#22, main photo) followed up Yarusi's performance with a complete-game effort in the nightcap, allowing just three hits over eight innings with no earned runs, 13 strikeouts and a lone walk, but took the loss in a 1-0 decision.  Barsotti received NESCAC Pitcher of the Week laurels for his fine outing.

Barsotti, who became the Wesleyan career leader for strikeouts in his last outing, upped his career total to 203 in 197 innings pitched.  His game at Bowdoin came down to the bottom of the 8th inning when the Polar Bears pushed across the game's only run on a throwing error after a sacrifice bunt.  Wesleyan got two men on in the top of the 9th as Joe Giaimo '11 walked and Chris Bonti '13 was hit by a pitch to start the frame.  The Polar Bears then got two strikeouts as their pichers combined to 13 Ks as well, and caught Giaimo on a steal attempt to end the game.

Giaimo's double in the 4th inning of the opener proved to be the only extra-base hit of the contest and led to the eventual game-winning run as he scored on a David Skura '12 single to give Wesleyan a 2-0 lead.  Giaimo also had the only double of the second game as he leads the team with 11 two-baggers in 17 games played, more doubles than any other two Cardinals combined.  Wesleyan's first run came in the 3rd inning on a pair of walks, a sacrifice bunt by Kyle Weiss '12 and an RBI goundout by Andrew Yin '15.  Yarusi was touched for an unearned run in the 6th and Jeff Blout '14 came in to throw the 7th after Yarusi walked the leadoff batter and pick up a save.  He retired the three batters he faced on a pair of grounders and a strikeout.

Wesleyan began the home schedule Tues., April 3 when Elms College came to Middletown to face the Cardinals.  Six Wesleyan pitchers combined for 12 strikeouts and scattered six Elms hits in pacing the Cardinals to a 6-1 victory over the Blazers.  Wesleyan is back in action at home Fri., April 6 with the first of three game in a NESCAC West series vs. Middlebury.  

Wesleyan got three hits from Bonti, including a single in the bottom of the 4th that plated what proved to be the winning run as it was the Cardinals fourth straight hit in the frame.  Alex Meadow '12 started it off with a single, followed by hits from Donnie Cimino '15 and Giaimo as Giaimo's safety drove in Meadow.  It was Giaimo's team-leading 22nd RBI of the year.  Bonti then made it 2-0 for Wesleyan.

Elms had threatened in the 2nd inning by getting runners to second and third with no outs but Wesleyan starter Jimmy Hill '14 got out of the jam with a strikeout, a foul pop and another strikeout.  He had four Ks during his three innings on the mound.  Elms did get on the scoreboard in the 7th with three of its six safeties including an RBI double.

Wesleyan improved its lead to 5-1 in the bottom of the 7th with the big blow coming from Steve Moran '14, who lashed a ball deep into the right-centerfield gap and didn't stop running until he turned it into an inside-the-park with Sam Goodwin-Boyd '15 scoring in front of him.  Goodwin-Boyd had doubled down the left-field line to knock in Skura, who led off with a single.  Wesleyan's final run in the 8th was unearned, coming on an infield error.  Wesleyan collected 11 hits in the game with Cimino and Giaimo both picking up a pair to complement Bonti's three.  

Wesleyan's second pitcher, Chris Law '14, got the win to improve to 2-0 on the year, throwing two innings while allowing one hit with three strikeouts.  Each of the Cardinals' six pitchers in the contest posted at least one strikeout.  Wesleyan now stands 5-1 all-time vs. Elms.