Geoff Safford, Media Relations Assistant
Mike Volpe made his second appearance for the Stompers and his first start of the season Thursday. Volpe was called upon the night after the Stompers clinched a first half pennant, and many Stompers players were given a day off. But Sonoma was still looking to finish the first half on a winning note. Volpe had an extremely rough outing in his first appearance against the Admirals on July 10 in a 6-2 extra inning loss for Sonoma. Everything that could have gone wrong for the right-hander did go wrong. But when Volpe was called upon to start Thursday against the Diamonds, Volpe put that performance far in the rearview mirror.
Sonoma did a little bit of everything tonight against the Diamonds and turned in a great team effort. They got clutch hitting when they needed it, strong pitching, and also played some great defense to cap it off. Sonoma has now won five straight against the Diamonds as they completed the series sweep with a 5-2 win Thursday to close out the first half with a bang.
It was a night that Stompers newcomers shined as four players that were not on the opening day roster made great contributions. Chaz Meadows was at his best defensively, and at the plate as well. Meadows went 3 for 4 with a runs scored. On defense he helped turn a huge double play in the fifth inning that ended the bases loaded threat. He has proven to be a huge asset on the field defensively. With Meadows swinging the bat well in the lead off spot was icing on the cake.
Jacob Cox, and Erik Gonsalves were both fabulous out of the bullpen in their 3 2/3 innings pitched combined. Cox recorded 5 strikeouts on the night and allowed only 1 hit in 2 2/3 innings pitched. Gonzalves pitched a perfect ninth inning to earn his second save of the season. Volpe also earned his first win of the season for his effort in 6 1/3 innings pitched.
Stacy Piagno also made her first start in the field Thursday lining up at first base as Daniel Baptista was given the day off on the defensive side. Piagno had made two appearances with Sonoma, but both were on the mound as a starting pitcher. Piagno also made her first plate appearances for Sonoma and reached base in the fifth inning by drawing a walk and went on to score a run in the inning. Her play at first was also solid she could not have done her job any better. She handled every ball that came her way, and was fundamentally sound throughout.
Daniel Baptista was the lead run contributor as he got Sonoma on the board in the third, and fifth innings. Baptista finished the game 3 for 4 with a double and 2 driven in. it was fitting that Baptista knocked in Stacy Piagno with a single in the fifth as the two teammates have become close friends over the past couple weeks.
Sonoma ended the first half with the best record in the Pacific Association at (23-16). They will begin the second half where the season began over the weekend at Wilson Park, as Sonoma will go head to head with the Admirals. Sonoma played well against the last place Admirals (15-24) in the first half and never lost more than one game in a series against them. Sonoma went 4-2 at Wilson Park in the first half.
Tickets for upcoming Stompers games are available on StompersBaseball.com. Tickets, and fan merchandise are also available inside The Fan Shop located at 234 West Napa Street in downtown Sonoma. For more information, contact the Stompers front office at firstname.lastname@example.org.