Troy Machine Pitch team ready for World Series
Published 3:00 am Thursday, July 30, 2015
The Troy Machine Pitch team is taking its “never say die” attitude to South Carolina for the World Series.
Since the beginning of practice in June, Machine Pitch head coach Adam Brookins said he’s noticed a lot of competitiveness from his players.
“This team just never gets rattled,” Brookins said. “No matter what happens at any point of the game, the kids never stop trying. When they get down in a hole during a game, it almost seems like it makes them try harder and play better.”
The team is 10-1 in tournament play, including three wins earned during the final at bat thanks to walk-off hits.
Wes Braisted had the first walk-off win for the team in a key moment for Troy. With the team down by two runs against Enterprise in the district tournament and two men on base, Braisted cleared the bases on his first ever homerun giving Troy the win.
If getting the win wasn’t enough, it was also the first time that a Troy team in that age group defeated Enterprise in a tournament setting.
“Looking back you can probably say that was our biggest win so far this season,” Brookins said. “They were all big wins, but that was first time we have ever beaten Enterprise.”
After Troy fell to Enterprise the next night, the two teams met for the third time in the district championship.
With the game tied heading into the bottom of the sixth inning, Kade Brookins knocked in a bases-loaded base hit to give Troy the district title.
“After that, they started to believe that no matter what happens they were going to win the game,” Brookins said.
In the state tournament against Daphne, Troy had to battle back from a five-run deficit. After Troy strung together some base hits and loaded the bases, setting up Cade Edwards’ base-clearing triple to win the game.
Braisted, Brookins and Edwards came through for Troy with games on the line, but Brookins knows it was more of a team effort than the singular heroics of those three players.
“Not just one player can win a ballgame,” Brookins said. “These guys understand that, and they are able to come together as a team.”
Upon arrival to their celebration ceremony at the Sportsplex, Parks and Recreation Director Dan Smith explained to the crowd that Troy has some great players on their own, but have an even better team when the players work together as one. Brookins believes he couldn’t describe his team any better.
“I think that gives us an advantage moving forward,” Brookins said. “Every time we were able to come back it seemed like it always started with the 10,11 and 12 batters. That gives you the opportunity to wrap it back around to top of the lineup. I can’t say enough about the character and the makeup of the team. They have the will to win, and they refuse to lose.”
Brookins has confidence in his team knowing they all believe they can win the game no matter the score.
“They are already confident,” Brookins said. “If we are up huge late in the game and we know our defense is going to get the outs. If we are down late we have confidence that we will hit the ball and be able to score, because we have done it so many times.”
The Troy Machine Pitch team will take their confidence with them to Myrtle Beach, S.C., where they will participate in the Dixie Boys AA Machine Pitch World Series. Their first game will be on Monday, Aug. 3 at 10:30 a.m. against North Carolina.