Skip to main content

Wheatland Sun

Drakes Finish Season Strong, Miss Playoffs by One Game

Aug 03, 2023 12:00AM ● By Story and photos by Steven Bryla

Marysville pitcher Rodrigo Sanchez (13) throws a pitch in the Drakes 10-6 win over Dublin on Friday, July 28.

Drakes Finish Season Strong, Miss Playoffs by One Game [2 Images] Click Any Image To Expand

MARYSVILLE, CA (MPG) - The Marysville Drakes handled business in the final week of the regular season as they ended the regular season with a 6-1 record from July 23-30.

Marysville (27-23) had no room for error as they attempted to get into the fourth and final playoff spot for the Pecos League playoffs in the Pacific Division.

Prior to play on Sunday, July 23, the Drakes were in sixth place with a 21-22 record and needed to make a push in their final week of the season to have a shot at the playoffs and some luck from the baseball gods.

They fell to San Rafael on July 23 in a 6-3 loss. That was the final loss on the season for Marysville as they tallied six wins consecutively to finish the season.

On July 24, the Drakes beat the Lancaster Sound Breakers 12-4. Marysville was chasing Lancaster and it dwindelled their lead to a closer margin. In the game, Drakes starting pitcher Evan Nakagawa pitched seven strong innings on the mound giving up nine hits and three runs.

Marysville had a six-run third inning that put them ahead and they didn’t look back.

The Drakes final five games consisted of a lighter schedule if you looked at the standings with remaining games against Martinez, Vallejo and Dublin.

Marysville manager Bill Rogan consistently told the Dispatch throughout the season you can’t base a team off their record because in the Pecos League, anything can happen.

The Drakes got back to .500 on the season after they beat Vallejo 14-4 on Wednesday, July 26. Marysville right handed pitcher Michael Vochelli pitched 4.1 innings giving up two runs on five hits and struck out five. Drakes reliever Garret Mos picked up the win after going 2.2 innings and giving up two runs off one hit and sat down three Vallejo batters with strikes.

On Thursday, July 27, 55-year-old Dan Clemens picked up his second career Pecos League win in a 12-8 complete game victory over Dublin.

The baseball gods started to shine the light bright on Marysville as Lancaster was 27-19 going into play July 27. They had a tough schedule with three of their four final games against playoff teams (San Rafael and Monterey). The Sound Breakers lost three consecutive games from July 27-29, which put the Drakes into the playoff picture on the edge of their fingertips

Marysville handled Dublin again on Friday, July 28 with a 10-6 win despite Rogan getting ejected in the top of the first inning before an out was even recorded.

There was a clear foul ball that trickled away from home plate and the Dublin runner on third scored. Rogan told the umpire it was a foul ball in a calm tone and the home plate umpire threw Rogan out of the game.

There was clear tension in the pregame home plate meeting with the home plate umpire and the managers of both teams. Rogan expressed to the Dispatch the umpiring this season in the Pecos League has been some of the worst he has seen.

The Drakes beat 13-6 Martinez on Saturday, July 29. Oroville resident, Earl Johnson Jr. pitched 5.1 innings and struck out three while allowing seven hits kept Marysville afloat as the Drakes had a virtual tie of losses with Martinez and Lancaster losing to Monterey to cut their lead for the final playoff spot to one game.

The baseball gods gave Marysville one last glimmer of hope heading into the final game on Sunday, July 30 and they could only control their game. They easily devoured Dublin for the final time of the year in a 17-2 blowout.

Lancaster beat Monterey to finish one game ahead of the Drakes for the final playoff spot in the Pacific Division.

Although the Drakes didn’t make it to the postseason, there were plenty of bonds formed throughout the season.

Marysville outfielder Lyndon Weaver and pitcher Rodrigo Sanchez expressed to the Dispatch they had a great summer in the area. They added the team chemistry instantly clicked early in the year and you saw that throughout the many home games at Bryant Field this year.

Here is a breakdown of how the Drakes season went for their first year in the Pecos League.

They went 21-12 at home and 6-11 on the road and went 25-3 in games where they put more than 10 runs on the board.

In May, the Drakes went 3-2. In June they went 11-13 and rounded out the season 13-8 in July. The longest winning streak for Marysville was six games spanning the final week of the regular season. They did have three other win streaks of three games during the season. The longest losing streak by the Drakes were two three-game losing streaks.

As the Drakes first season ends, we look forward to welcoming them back next summer.