FROM STAFF REPORTS
Traverse City Record-Eagle
---- — TRAVERSE CITY — Scott Dunn got it done Sunday.
The veteran Traverse City righthander pitched seven shutout innings as the Beach Bums broke into the win column with a 6-2 victory over the Joliet Slammers.
It was the finale of a three-game series that opened the Frontier League season.
"Dunn was the story of the game," Beach Bums manager Gregg Langbehn said. "He pitched seven very efficient shutout innings. He had all his pitches working. He did a great job controlling the tempo of the game. He pounded the strike zone and we provided him with a little support."
Dunn allowed four hits. He struck out five and did not issue any walks.
Jose Vargas led the Beach Bums attack with three hits and three RBIs. Steve Woodward, who hits second just ahead of Vargas, reached base three times, stole two bases and scored three runs.
"He (Vargas) got some pitches up in the zone and he didn't miss 'em," Langbehn said. "He had some good opportunities with runners on base. With (Ryan) Still and Woodward at the top of the order, that's going to be a real positive for Jose, Chase (Burch) and Goose (Sean Gusrang)."
As in the first two games, the Beach Bums (1-2) took an early 1-0 lead when Woodward walked, stole second and came home on a Vargas single in the top of the third. In the bottom half of the frame, Dunn pitched out of trouble after the Slammers put runners on second and third with one out.
"There were some stress innings," Langbehn said. "He (Dunn) worked through it. That third inning was big because we were up 1-0."
The Beach Bums stretched the lead to 2-0 in the fifth when Woodward walked, stole second, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a Gusrang single.
Traverse City broke it open with three in the sixth, thanks to two errors by the Slammers. Vargas had the lone hit in the inning, a two-run double.
The Beach Bums picked up a final run in the seventh when Andrew Cohn hit a sacrifice fly to center that brought in Taylor Wrenn, who had doubled and stole third.
Cohn and Gusrang finished with two hits apiece.
Langbehn said the team remains a work in progress.
"There are some things we need to clean up offensively and defensively," he said. "We played a lot better (Sunday)."
Traverse City celebrates its home opener at Wuerfel Park on Tuesday against Evansville. Jacob Sabol will get the call. Jacob Clem and Johnny Omahen will pitch the next two games in the series. Clem and Omahen were the losing pitchers in the first two games at Joliet.
"Clem elevated some pitches and gave up some runs," Langbehn said. "I told him the only thing I would have done differently, other than getting the ball down, was to slow the game down to change the timing of the hitters. Instead, he accelerated his tempo and pace. He knew that. His bottom line was a little misleading because he threw really well the first three innings.
"Omahen had some good moments. He got away from some of his strengths and that hurt him. He'll be fine, though. This is his first year starting. He's always been a reliever so he's going to have a little bit of a learning curve."