GARDINER — While Oak Hill baseball struggled to a 3-13 record this spring, Josh Martin emerged as one of the better pitchers in Class B. It’s early, but it looks like Martin is using that as a springboard to a solid summer with Gardiner’s American Legion baseball team.

Martin got his first start Thursday, and threw a two-hitter against South China Subway, helping Gardiner to a 3-1 Zone 2 victory.

Martin also pitched for Gardiner last summer, but didn’t always have great control. He had four walks against Subway, but was still economical, needing only 93 pitches for the complete-game win.

“I put in a lot of hard work over the offseason,” Martin said.

South China Subway (1-2) got another fine pitching performance, this time from Shyler Scates, who also threw a complete game. Scates allowed four hits in six innings, struck out four and didn’t walk a batter.

Unfortunately for Scates, three of those four hits were in the third inning. Zach Farrin led off with a single on a misjudged fly ball and Jensen Orewiler was hit by a pitch. After Josh Mashke bunted the runners over, Kyle Fletcher lined a double to the gap in right-center field for a 2-0 lead. Martin followed by dumping an offspeed pitch into center field for an RBI single, and it was 3-0.

Scates then finished the game by retiring 11 of last 13 batters. The two who reached were on an infield single and an error.

But the way Martin was pitching, those three runs were plenty. Subway didn’t have a hit until Jory Humphrey singled to center in the fourth, and that rally was erased with a double play and shortstop Dennis Meehan’s nice catch of a looper to short left field.

Martin’s only real mistake was in the fifth, when Mackenzie Michaud drew a leadoff walk and Martin tried to pick him off. The throw got away, and since Gardiner’s foul territory is about the size of a small town, Michaud was able to get all the way to third. Keith Cloutier then drove him in with a liner that went off Michaud to Meehan for a groundout.

Subway’s only other hit was when Cloutier singled with two out in the seventh. Erskine, Subway’s primary drawing school, also had some offensive problems this spring. Subway coach Mark St. Amand thinks the talent is there to have a solid offense, and it appears Subway will have the pitching to stay in every game. This season, Subway pitchers have allowed a total of eight hits in 19 innings, but Subway is still 1-2.

“(Martin) pitched a good game,” St. Amand said. “We made some contact, but nothing solid. We’re not going to win any games if we don’t hit the ball. I told them they’ve got to come to the plate with a better mental attitude. They’ve got to go up there thinking they’re better than that pitcher.”

Matt DiFilippo — 861-9243

[email protected]


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