The Gridley High School baseball team finds itself in a pretty good place as the second half of the 2018 season kicks off this week.
Last week was Spring Break, a quiet week for most area teams. But the Bulldogs still managed to get a couple of games in, playing a quartet of contests at the Sutter Spring Classic
The Bulldogs just lost one game at Sutter, falling to Winters, 7-0 in an early championship bracket contest. They ended up taking third place with a 12-2win over UPrep.
With the wins at Sutter, the Bulldogs improved to 13-2-1 on the 2018 season.
Gridley coach Dan Crabtree likes where his team is headed into the stretch drive of 2018.
“We’re getting pretty good play in all three phases of the game,” Crabtree said.
Indeed, the Bulldogs are. They are hitting .362 as a team, and Bulldog pitching has notched a 1.18 ERA so far this season. They’re also playing good team defense, with a .928 fielding percentage.
When all three of those numbers are that good, you’re hard to beat.
Crabtree has been especially impressed with his team’s depth.
“It’s not just one or two guys,” Crabtree said.
The Bulldogs are averaging 9.94 runs per game. They’re doing all their offensive damage without the long ball: Gridley has not recorded a home run yet in 2018.
Lance Santerre leads the way at the plate, hitting a torrid .553 with four doubles, a pair of triples and 24 RBIs.
And that stellar 1.18 ERA has come by committee: The Bulldogs are getting great mound work from several hurlers.
Santerre is 3-1 and has not given up an earned run in 21.1 innings of work, striking out 39 while walking just seven. Kellen Brothers is 4-1 with an 0.32 ERA, and has fanned 39 while issuing just nine free passes.
The next four weeks will be all about league play, which started Tuesday afternoon at home as the Bulldogs hosted Paradise in a crossover contest that counts in the league standings.
On Friday, the Bulldogs will travel to Oroville for another league contest.