It was another midweek split for the baseball team on Wednesday.
The Bulldogs (16–13–1) lost the first game of a doubleheader to Fairfield, 4–3, after a three-run, seventh-inning comeback by the Stags (13–15). Yale rebounded a few hours later, though, with a 7–3 victory in the nightcap to conclude an eight-game homestand.
Gant Elmore ’11 and Trygg Larsson-Danforth ’10 continued their hot streaks, as each went two-for-five for the day. Elmore continues to lead the team with a .405 average, while Larsson-Danforth is in second with a .385 mark and leads the team with eight home runs after hitting a two-run shot in the second game.
Right-hander Greg Lyons ’12 had a strong outing for the Bulldog in game one, allowing three hits and one run in four innings. It was not enough to emerge with the win, however, as the Stags scored three off of Robert Gruber ’10 in the seventh and final inning.
Yale took a 2–0 lead in the first inning after a two-run double to left-center by catcher Ryan Brenner ’12.
Fairfield earned a run back in the third inning after an RBI single up the middle followed a triple.
The Elis made it 3–1 in the fifth inning — all without getting a hit. Larsson-Danforth walked and then advanced to second base after Brenner was hit by a pitch. The two runners advanced a base after a successful bunt by rightfielder Charlie Neil ’12, and Larsson-Danforth scored on a sacrifice fly from leftfielder Andrew Moore ’11.
Holding onto a 3–1 lead, Gruber came in to start the sixth inning. The right-hander was able to get out of a jam in the sixth by getting the Fairfield batter to pop out with runners on second and third and two outs.
He was not so lucky in the final inning. After having already given up an RBI single with no outs, Gruber let in two more when the Stags got a double with runners at the corners. Yale went down 1–2–3 in the final inning to end the game.
It was a rare misstep by Gruber, who had earlier this week been named the Ivy League Pitcher of the Week after throwing 5.2 shutout innings in relief in three appearances last week.
“Everything can’t go right every time,” Gruber said. “You just have to live with the fact that you had an off day.”
Pitcher Andy Megee ’11 affirmed the team’s confidence in Gruber, who has the lowest ERA of any hurler on the team.
“I speak for everyone when I say we always want [Gruber] out there in that situation,” he said.” He’s been great all year.”
Although the Bulldogs only had four hits in their first game, they tallied 11 hits in game two — and jumped out to a 4–0 lead in the first inning.
With Elmore on base after having been hit by a pitch, Larsson-Danforth ’10 homered to left field to put the Elis up 2–0.
A string of three consecutive hits — a single from Neil and doubles from designated hitter Josh Scharff ’13 and rightfielder Andrew Kolmar ’11 — gave the Bulldogs a 4–0 lead.
The Stags got a run in the third inning, but the Elis promptly responded with two more runs in the bottom half of the inning. After pitcher Megee scored on a wild pitch, Kolmar hit another RBI single to make it 6–1.
After a sacrifice fly from Megee made it 7–1 in the fourth, Yale was able to cruise through the game’s final three innings.
“The first game was pretty bad and we were upset, so we came out strong in the second one to prove the first game wasn’t how we play,” Megee said.
The Stags got one run in both the fifth and sixth innings, with the runs coming off of a single and a fielder’s choice.
So as not to overwork any one pitcher, the Bulldogs split the seven innings between three pitchers. Chris Finneran ’10 threw the first four innings, followed by Avery Lanman ’13 for the next one, and Megee for the final two frames. Each pitcher allowed one earned run.
Yale will go back on the road this weekend, with two doubleheaders against Rolfe Division rival Dartmouth (13–12, 4–4 Ivy).