Dailey tosses two-hit shutout leading Cyclones over Cougars, 5-0

Published 3:39 pm Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Baseball in its simplest form is a pitcher throwing strikes and allowing his teammates to make the plays behind him.
The point was taken to heart by Elizabethton sophomore hurler Matthew Dailey as the Cyclone pitcher twirled an impressive seven inning, two-hit shutout over the visiting Sullivan Central Cougars at Joe O’Brien Field Monday evening in a 5-0 Cyclone victory.
With the win, the Cyclones went to 2-1 on the early season.
“I go out there with the same mindset every time,” said Dailey after tossing the gem. “I want to get the job done for the team. It’s a proud moment, but I have to just keep doing the same thing that I have been doing.”
Dailey was in the same form as former major league pitcher Greg Maddux of the Atlanta Braves as the big right-hander was moving his pitches over the plate and not overpowering the Cougars, but simply enticing the Central batters to put the ball into play.
The results speak for themselves as shortstop Michael Robinson accounted for seven putouts at first base while second baseman Ethan Eggleston was also complimenting Dailey’s effort with two impressive ground ball putouts and also ran down a couple of fly-ball outs from his second base position in the game.
Add to the mix a diving effort from centerfielder Ryan Wetzel that robbed a Cougar batter of a sure base hit, and it was an all-around defensive effort from the Cyclones to back up their pitcher.
The effort put a Ronald McDonald-type smile on Cyclone head coach Ryan Presnell’s face after the contest.
“With the new pitch count rules we have to be sure that we are going to be able to have him a little bit later in the week,” said Presnell. “We said we wanted to watch the pitch count for his health to protect his arm, but once he started rolling, we planned maybe to go to the fourth or fifth inning.
“I think he may have thrown a total of 76 total pitches in a seven-inning game, that’s less than 11 pitches an inning. We measure whether an inning is successful or not in pitching by 13 pitches. You can ask for nothing more.”
Dailey finished the game with six strikeouts and no base on balls which is impressive for any pitcher.
Meanwhile, his offense may have been caught up in watching their pitcher work, but managed to do enough to give enough runs early to allow Dailey to do his work.
Elizabethton plated two runs in the bottom of the first inning as Evan Carter and Robinson reached on back-to-back singles and both scored on a throwing error by Central shortstop Blake Lucas.
It was a pitcher’s duel from the second up to the bottom of the sixth when the Cyclones dented the scoreboard three more times to push the lead to 5-0.
Carter tripled to bolster his .667 batting average through three games and scored on an RBI-double by Robinson.
Brodie Adams followed up a Logan Estep strikeout by lacing an RBI-single to score Robinson. Adams would step on the dish thanks to a 5-3 fielder’s choice RBI by Cyclone catcher Evan Perkins.
Dailey gave up a single to Noah Vaughn before fanning Carson Minton to end the game to give the Cyclones the win in the seventh.
Elizabethton travels to Kingsport today to take on Sullivan North in a Three Rivers Conference showdown.

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