TORRINGTON — The Naugatuck Dogs have had some kind of year in the Tri-State Baseball League. On Sunday, the Dogs brought home one of what they hope will be several trophies as the summer of 2015 winds down.
The Dogs used a blitzing six-run first inning, then glided to a 6-1 win over the Tri-Town Trojans to take home the Stan Musial state championship on a brilliant afternoon at Fuessenich Park.
Lefty Bryan Wyrebek took that first frame safety net and ran with it, although to talk the manager and the pitcher, you may have thought something different.
“He really didn’t have his best stuff today,” manager Jeff Harlamon said. “He was frustrated, but he’s a gamer.”
The Trojans might disagree with that assessment after managing just five hits and a late seventh-inning run in dropping the second of two games they played on Sunday.
Earlier Sunday morning, Tri-State got to the final by beating Wolcott, 2-0.
“I just couldn’t locate my change-up or curve ball tonight,” Wyrebek said, “Those are usually the two pitches I love throwing the most, so I just had to kind of spot my fastball and let the guys behind me make the plays.”
Wyrebek struck out four and walked two in going the distance.
The Trojans simply ran out of arms on Sunday after having to win twice on Saturday (4-2 over Wilton and 2-0 over Terryville) and again on Sunday morning.
Miles Scribner pitched both games on Saturday, throwing 12 plus innings in the wins.
Bobby Chatfield took the ball for the Trojans and ran into trouble right off the bat in the bottom of the first when he walked the first two batters before giving up RBI singles to Kyle Murphy and Devin Murphy. The wheels continued to come off in the frame after a pair of errors and a booming two-run double by Macky Ciancilo left a six run hole for the Trojans.
Tri-Town put runners on in each inning but each time, Wyrebek was up to the task until an infield single by Steve Rice plated the only run for the Trojans in the top of the seventh.
Chatfield went six innings and settled down nicely after the rough first, allowing just two hits the rest of the way.
The Dogs have been the class of the Tri-State league all season and have gotten stronger as the year went on.
“We played pretty good in the beginning of the season,” Harlamon said. “But after our fifth or sixth game, we really started playing good. We have always had really good defense and pitching that was solid but one through nine, we just started swinging the bats.”
The group has played together for a good while and it shows on the field and in the dugout.
“We have a really good group of kids,” Harlamon said. “Basically the same guys since we started 10 years ago. They come in every day, they’re very committed.”
Wyrebek, who attended the University of New Haven after his time at Bristol Eastern High School, is thriving with his new team.
“This year has been unbelievable for me,” Wyrebek said. “This is my first year playing with Naugatuck. I had been playing with the Greeners (Bristol) for the past three years. It just been a lot of fun coming out and playing baseball with these guys who play baseball the way it’s supposed to be played.”
The Dogs now sport an outstanding 21-1 record and have a week off to prepare for the Tri-State Tournament, which for them will start Sunday.
“We have a bye and then we start tournament play next Sunday,” Harlamon said. “We will be well rested.”