2019 CRCBL Pitcher of the Year -- Chase Lee
Date: Aug 13, 2019
By Matt Cohen
SILVER SPRING – Ryan Roell knew he’d face higher caliber pitching in the Cal Ripken League.
At Division III Frostburg State, Roell was nearly unstoppable at the plate. He hit .362 with 40 RBIs and a school record 16 home runs this spring.
But the success didn’t carry over into the summer.
With the Silver Spring-Takoma T-Bolts, Roell started the summer hitting .233. He hadn’t hit a home run. He hadn’t been a contributor to his team’s CRCBL leading .279 batting average.
On Saturday night against the D.C. Grays, Roell started 0-3. Though his night resembled the rest of the T-Bolts lineup which didn’t get a hit until the sixth inning. The offense had done virtually nothing until the ninth inning.
But Roell stepped into the batters box in the bottom of the ninth in the midst of a T-Bolts rally, trailing by two.
“I knew coming in it was going to be a big at bat, either make or break the ballgame,” Roell said. “I was just trying to stay calm, stay relaxed.”
Roell came up with the clutch hit the T-Bolts needed, singling up the middle and driving in two runs to tie the game.
His hit sent the game to extra innings where Luke Trainer (Millersville) had the winning hit as the T-Bolts beat the Grays 5-4 in 11 innings.
“We’ve been relying on our bats all year,” T-Bolts head coach Doug Remer said. “They came through again.”
Roell has been working with Remer to adjust to the Division I pitchers Roell faces in the CRCBL. It’s been an adjustment Roell says has been difficult as he tries to apply his coaching to the games.
“I know the results will come, I just have to be patient,” Roell said.
He only had one hit in the T-Bolts win, but it was the biggest hit he has had all summer. It was the first result of the work he has done.
“Early on I think he was trying to do too much,” Remer said. “Trying to hit it over the firehouse. He’s been working really hard this past week. He went through a tough time where we forced him to sit down. Struggled a bit coming out to try it. The past couple games, when he’s on, he’s a guy you don’t want to face.”
D.C. starter Reid McLaughlin (BYU) shut down the T-Bolts lineup over the first four innings, four perfect innings. Two early home runs gave McLaughlin a lead to work with, as the Grays went ahead 4-0 in the third inning.
Ian McMillan (Houston) singled in the sixth for the T-Bolts first hit of the game, and Tony Gallo (Lehigh) drove him in for the first run.
It was Gallo who started the ninth inning rally with a single. The T-Bolts scored a run on a wild pitch before Roell tied it with his single to center.
“I was not very scared throughout the night, it was just a matter of time,” Remer said. “In baseball, it’s just a matter of time before the ball finds a spot.”
Brayden Kail (California U of Pennsylvania) and Tyler Dyball (Hawaii) provided big innings for Silver Spring out of the bullpen. After Tanner Jacobson (Queens University of Charlotte) struggled to start the game, Kail and Dyball tossed eight scoreless innings. Dyball recorded the win, pitching the ninth, 10th and 11th innings.
In an 11 inning game that ended in just two hours and 50 minutes, Trainer singled to second base, where the Grays were unable to corral a hard hit ground ball. Lucas Donlon (Virginia Tech) came home to score the winning run.
Silver Spring improves to 8-6 with the win while D.C. drops to 6-9. D.C. has gone 2-9 since starting 4-0. Both teams will be on the road Sunday.