With two runners on and two outs in the bottom of the first, Ramirez got Beau Meshell to ground out to first. With Dalton Wood on second and one out in the third, Ramirez got Tanner Bane and Aiden Doherty to ground out to strand Wood at third.
“When we’ve had the opportunities to get guys in scoring position, we just can’t get that crucial hit,” Blue coach Derek Collins said.
“That’s been kind of a theme for us.”
With two runners on with no outs in the sixth, Ramirez got Meshell to ground one back to the mound for a fielder’s choice at third. Gold third baseman Gabe Littlejim then overthrew first base trying for the double play, allowing Logan Carter and Meshell to get to third and second, respectively.
That set up Melton’s RBI groundout, which cut Gold’s lead to 3-2. But with the tying run on third, Ramirez needed just one pitch to get pinch-hitter Brice Smith to fly out to left to get out of the inning.
Ramirez gave up a one-out walk to Dalton Compton in the bottom of the seventh, but got Wood to fly out to center. Ramirez then struck out Bane for the third time to finish the game.
Ramirez allowed two runs — one earned — on three hits, two walks, a hit-by-pitch and seven strikeouts in seven innings.
“I just mix up my velocity,” Ramirez said. “I’ll throw hard a couple of pitches, then I just change up the pitch-speed.”
Blue starting pitcher Caleb Seward also went seven innings, matching Ramirez pitch for pitch in the later innings. But Collin Morris drew a leadoff walk for Gold in the first, then Jason Long beat out an infield single.
Hunter Southerland’s single to right scored Morris, then Gabe Littlejim’s groundout to shortstop scored Long for a 2-0 Gold lead. Gold went up 3-0 in the fourth when Gabe walked and Drake Norton singled to center.