McCann Falls To Granby On Late Balk Call

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GRANBY, Mass. — McCann Tech senior Mike Chappell pitched about as well as a player can pitch and got a loss to show for it. 

Chappell gave up just one hit and one unearned run, which came in the bottom of the seventh by way of a balk. That’s right, a balk. That was enough to give the Granby baseball team a walk-off 1-0 win at home and hand Chappell his third one-run loss of the year.

The Rams got the leadoff runner on in the seventh, when Zac Funk struck out but reached base on a dropped third strike. A single, the only Rams' hit of the game, by Brandon Cloutier moved Funk to third to set up the bizarre ending. With two strikes and two outs, the balk was called by the home plate umpire, allowing the only run of the game to cross the plate.

“Mike Chappell pitched his heart out, and then that call pulled the carpet from under him," Hornets head coach Pat Ryan said. "Being around the sport my whole life, this could have been the worst decision an umpire could have made. It was clearly the wrong call. Unbelievable, that’s all I have to say."

McCann (8-9) was able to come up with seven hits off Granby starter Andy Gifford, but it couldn't string together enough to score a run. Chappell and fellow senior Nate Gutman had two hits each for the Hornets.

Gifford earned the win for Granby, pitching a complete-game shutout while striking out two. Chappell took the tough-luck loss, giving up just the one hit and one unearned run while striking out 10. He dropped to 3-4 despite sporting an ERA of 1.15.

Needing two wins in their final three games to make the Western Mass. Tournament., McCann next hosts Pathfinder at 4 p.m. on Monday. 

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