Starting pitcher Nick Marquez was shelled for seven runs on six hits through five innings as the Mark Keppel High baseball team lost to host Montebello High, 7-1 on Friday in a CIF Southern Section Almont League game.
Marquez gave up two runs in the first inning, three runs in the third and two runs in the fifth en route to the loss. He also gave up four doubles on the afternoon as his record fell to 0-1.
Picking up the win for the Oilers and improving his record to 2-2 was righty Jonathan Romero. Romero pitched a complete game, scattering seven hits while striking out eight and walking just one batter.
Romero said everything pretty much came together for him on the mound.
“I mostly changed my speeds and hit my spots,” he said. “That’s really it. The defense did its work and that’s pretty much it.”
Keppel coach Ryan Nunez praised the Oilers for beating the Aztecs.
“Montebello’s the story,” Nunez said. “They brought it. All the kudos goes to them. They were ready to play and we weren’t. We’ll fix it. I promise you that. We’ll fix it.”
Nunez added the team was stymied by Romero.
“We weren’t ready for a standard fastball pitcher with a bender with two strikes,” he said. “That’s my fault. I got to get them ready better.”
Montebello coach Manny Arana was happy with Romero’s performance.
“He threw a lot of strikes early in the count,” Arana said. “He challenged them and made them put it in play. They put it in play and let our defense work. That way he didn’t throw to many pitches.”
Arana added his team was able to hit off of Marquez pretty well.
“He had trouble throwing that second pitch for a strike so we just honed in on the fastball,” Arana said. “When a pitcher just throws a fastball it’s hard to keep someone under wraps for seven innings.”
Despite having trouble on the mound, Marquez had a good day with the bat. He went 3-for-3 with two doubles and scored the Aztecs’ lone run in the top of the seventh inning.
Montebello took the early 2-0 in the first inning. After second baseman Rich Santoscoy singled to left and shortstop Andrew Jimenez reached base on an error by Keppel second baseman Ivan Berumen, Oilers third baseman Adam Rubio knocked them both in with a double to left field.