When Ban Johnson’s Mackay Williams was walked with the second at bat of the game, it’s unlikely that the Mustangs anticipated that it would be one of the defining plays in their eventual 2-0 loss to the Ban Johnson All-Stars.
The Ban Johnson batter would steal second base during the next at bat and eventually run-in on a single from All-Star teammate Jeremy Lufft that itself was one of only six hits on the day for the All-Stars. This would prove to be an insurmountable lead for the Mustangs.
Despite a revolving door on the mound for the All-Stars that saw nine different players pitch, the Mustangs only managed to put three runners on base throughout the duration of the game, the first two instances occurring in the bottom of the third as Josh Williams connected on the team’s sole hit of the day on a line drive single and Erasmo Gonzalez was walked later that inning.
Williams, a hulking 6’5, 250 pound designated hitter, displayed his athleticism by stealing third base to put his team in prime scoring position with only one out on the board. His team was unable to capitalize however, as the next two batters would be putout at first.
Being aggressive on the bases is something of a new component to Williams’ game.
“My first three years of college baseball, I had no stolen bases. Not even one,” he said. “My coach said halfway through my senior season ‘Hey, you should try a delayed steal,’ so the next game I took a couple of shuffle steps and just took off. Most guys, when they see a dude my size leading off, they’re pretty laid back about it and aren’t even looking my way, so when I do go most of the time I actually can beat them to the bag.”
The All-Stars would save half of their offensive production for the seventh inning, stringing together three hits which ultimately acted as enough of an insurance run for the offensively challenged Mustangs.
Williams did not want the team’s eventual loss to overshadow the performance of starting pitcher Matt Diaz.
“We couldn’t put together the hits, but even still I was happy for our pitchers. They had a great day,” Williams said. “Diaz went out and pitched his butt off, and I couldn’t be happier for him. He’s a guy who I definitely look up to on that side of the ball.”
Though a single from Brody Santilli matched their hit total of the game in the final inning, a Joshua Lincoln center field fly and a double play off a grounder from Brady Anderson would put the Mustangs away.