ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa. – Making his first career start, Franklin & Marshall senior, John Dutton, delivered a three-run blast in F&M’s four-run third. Dutton’s round trip via leftfield was a third of the offense as Diplomats (1-1) dropped Elizabethtown 9-6 at the Jays’ (5-4) Boyd Stadium. The win was F&M’s first under new skipper, Adam Taylor.
F&M’s four-run third was the second salvo fired in the early going. The Diplomats put three on the board in the second, and tacked a run onto Dutton’s shot n the third to give the guests a 7-2 lead through three.
Dutton finished the game with just the one hit and three RBIs, but he scored twice. His base on balls in the second inning became a run on an Andrew Hanson single into centerfield. Dutton became the game-winning run when he stepped on home in the third on his homer.
The Diplomats offense opened up in the second when Nick Rolnick led off the frame with a walk. That was followed by Bill Murray’s double to left, which left two Diplomats in scoring position. Rolnick came home on an Eric Bornstein sacrifice fly to center, while Murray crossed when J.T. Triantos found a hole in the left side, making it 2-0. Dutton’s run made it 3-0 before the Jays’ starter Matt Kutz, worked out of the jam.
The Jays’ got two runs on as many hits and as many errors in the bottom of the inning, to make it 3-2.
Jason Anderson didn’t waste any time responding. He started the top of the fourth with a triple to right-center, and was plated by Murray with one out. Bornstein reached on a single, setting up Dutton’s shot to make it 7-2. Murray drove F&M’s runs across in the fourth and ninth innings.
Murray finished the day 4-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored. He was the only F&M batter with multiple hits, however, nine different Diplomats picked up a hit on the day.
That led to Kutz’s demise. He allowed eight earned runs on nine hits through three-and-two-thirds. The Jays’ bullpen settled down the fireworks the rest of the way.
F&M starter, Matt Metsch (1-0) was solid through five innings, allowing two unearned runs on four hits. He struck out a single batter and issued a pair of walks. Anderson worked three innings allowing an equal number of runs on four hits, with Brendan McCreary closing the day allowing a run on two hits to the last chance Jays.
Adam Sheibley, Tom Semenak, and Ben Yeager each recorded a pair of hits for E’town. Yeager drove in a pair while Sheibley and Semenak each plated a run.
The Diplomats are idle until their spring break trip gets underway this weekend. F&M is slated to play Dension in a Sunday pair in Winter Haven, Florida. The Diplomats are eyeing the possibility of adding a game on Friday. Details will be furnished on GoDiplomats.com should that occur.