Moorpark Baseball struggles to score as Bakersfield stretches their losing streak

Freshman+catcher+Robert+Rehman+slides+into+second+base+in+an+attempt+to+avoid+the+double+play+in+the+first+game+of+Moorpark%27s+home+doubleheader+versus+Bakersfield+College+on+May+8%2C+2021.+Photo+credit%3A+Danny+Stipanovich

Freshman catcher Robert Rehman slides into second base in an attempt to avoid the double play in the first game of Moorpark’s home doubleheader versus Bakersfield College on May 8, 2021. Photo credit: Danny Stipanovich

It was a beautiful day for some weekend baseball as the Moorpark Raiders faced off against the Bakersfield Renegades. The Raiders came into the matchup standing at 5-7 and on a four-game losing streak that they hoped to end. The Renegades on the other hand came into the battle 8-3 and on a four-game winning streak.

The first game of the doubleheader did not go the Raiders’ way as they struggled to get their bats going and had many costly errors that led to four runs being put on the board against them. The Raiders ended up losing 4-1 and therefore extended their losing streak to five games.

One shining moment for the Raiders was when Freshman Albert Prado hit a rocket that left the ballpark that would give the Raiders their lone run. Prado also flashed the leather multiple times making gold glove like plays that saved the Raiders from allowing even more runs. Prado knew the team was down and that he had to provide a spark to try and pry his team back into the game.

“Before I went up to hit, I was in my head thinking that I had to get something going, I honestly wasn’t even expecting to hit a home run, it just happened. It unfortunately did not turn things around but it’s alright we have another game and we will come out with a fire under us,” said Prado.

The Raiders pitching overall pitched a very good game, just some fielding errors held the team back and allowed the Renegades to get runs on the board and tire out some of the Raiders’ arms. Moorpark only allowed four runs but the four errors ended up hurting them in the end.

Moorpark Raider's freshman pitcher Noah Balandran delivers a pitch against the visiting Bakersfield Renegades on May 8, 2021.
Moorpark Raider's freshman pitcher Noah Balandran delivers a pitch against the visiting Bakersfield Renegades on May 8, 2021. Photo credit: Danny Stipanovich

The pitching had some strong points though as Raiders pitcher Andrew Tarazon came in to relieve the game from the bullpen and had a nice couple of innings that kept the Raiders in it. Tarazon had some nasty pitches that had great breaks and was also locating his fastball with ease.

Tarazon knew he had to keep the game close and focused on keeping his team in it with his pitching efforts.

“I knew I had to execute my pitches and take it pitch by pitch, I really focused on what Coach V had to say and what Robbie put down,” said Tarazon.

Many errors put the pitchers in some tough situations but Tarazon kept calm and had his teammate’s backs no matter what happened.

“We just move on each play, we have all played enough baseball to where we are old enough to field a ground ball and throw it, it’s really not a big deal we just have to move on and try to put things behind us,” explained Tarazon.

The Raiders all seemed to be optimistic about the next game and seemed motivated to end their losing streak and send Bakersfield home with a loss.

Moorpark redshirt freshman catcher Keegan Feeley was one of the players who had a lot of optimism that his team would get revenge in the next matchup.

“The bats were not alive, but our pitching actually came through and helped us out in the long run. There were a couple mistakes in the infield but nothing that we can not correct. This next game we are just going to go out there and backup our pitcher and get some runs on the board, hopefully jump on them early,” explained Feeley.

Moorpark's freshman catcher Robert Rehman swings at a pitch during the Raider's home game against Bakersfield College on Saturday, May 8, 2021.
Moorpark's freshman catcher Robert Rehman swings at a pitch during the Raider's home game against Bakersfield College on Saturday, May 8, 2021. Photo credit: Danny Stipanovich

The second game of the doubleheader was played thirty minutes after the first and the Raiders fell once again to the mighty Renegades 6-2.

The back-to-back losses leaves the Raiders sitting at 5-9 so far this year with twelve games left. The Raiders desperately need their bats to come alive as in five of the six last games they have not scored more than three runs. That simply is not enough run support for their pitchers.

The Raiders will take the road to play their next game against the Oxnard Condors on Thursday, May 13 in a doubleheader matchup that begins at 12 p.m. The Raiders have split the season series against the Condors so far, losing the first game 1-0 and coming back to win the second matchup 8-7.