As the arms become less available for the Boulder Collegians, seemingly by the day, David Dellaserra has been a constant source of stability for Taylor Henry and his staff.
And having pitched just about 30 spring innings with Saint Mary’s (Calif.) — a Division I school that competes in the West Coast Conference — there’s no indication he’ll slow down, either.
On Monday night against the Denver Black Bears, Dellaserra was once again the source of much frustration for the opposition, limiting the Bears to four hits without issuing a free pass in a 7-2 victory at Scott Carpenter Park that opened a scheduled doubleheader.
Dellaserra has been working a new arm slot the past couple months, and the summer work with the Collegians has been a great platform for him to train for that mental change. Five more innings of work Monday pushed his summer workload past his spring total, but he lowered his earned-run average to 2.40 with another strong effort.
“I’m pitching a lot but my arm feels good,” Dellaserra said after improving to 5-1 for the Collegians. “I feel comfortable going out there. It’s been great to get comfortable with (the new pitching motion), just being able to work on all my stuff and getting more of a slider working down there.”
Having Dellaserra chew up innings has been a godsend for Henry, whose staff has lost several key pitchers already with the team just now getting into a heavy does of their Rocky Mountain Baseball League schedule.
Henry has been impressed by Dellaserra’s ability to stay within himself even while figuring out how to control his pitches. With three more strikeouts of Black Bears batters, he had 26 strikeouts to just seven walks this summer, too.
“I think he’s only thrown one time not here (at Scott Carpenter), so he loves pitching at home and when he’s out there we know he is going to give us a chance to win,” Henry said. “He takes the pressure off our hitters. He’s a competitor, and his arm angle allows him to keep everything down in the zone. He has good movement and attacks.”
Tied at 2-2 in the fourth inning, the Black Bears had a chance to break the game open with runners at the corners and just one out, but a tidy double play started by Connor Messinger ended the threat.
The Collegians then scored the next five runs unanswered, sparked by patience (seven walks drawn in the final three frames) and a power surge. Shane Olson and Drew Rosbottom each hit solo home runs in the fifth inning, the latter of which cleared the benches as Bears pitcher Ryan Cate approached Rosbottom with words as he crossed home plate.
Connor Cremers came on to pitch two scoreless innings for the Collegians, who improved to 20-9 overall.
“Shane has been showing it in batting practice but it hadn’t translated into the game until (Monday), and Drew Rosbottom … that was his first of the year,” Henry said. “Good to get him going.”
The team was scheduled to travel to Liberal, Kansas, for a pair of non-league games but they opted to cancel the trip and heal up for the weekend. Including a July 4 home doubleheader, the Collegians have eight games between July 3-7.
In other words, it’s a make or break week for a team looking for its first RMBL regular season championship.
“It’ll be good to get some rest, work on some things and come back at it and have a strong week,” Dellaserra said.
Boulder Collegians 7, Denver Black Bears 2
At Scott Carpenter Park (Game 1)
Black Bears 010 100 0 — 2 7 2
Collegians 110 221 x — 7 7 1
W — David Dellaserra. L — O’Brien.
Black Bears hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Ryan Cate 4-0-0-0, Dylan Klava 3-0-0-0, Zach Moldenhauer 3-1-1-0, Nick Bartalone 3-1-2-0, Allen Martin 3-0-1-0, Mickey Meinhoffer 2-0-2-2, Isaac Gallegos 3-0-0-0, Collin Leif 3-0-1-0, Sean Imes 2-0-0-0, Rey Monje 1-0-0-0. Totals 27-2-7-2. 2B —Moldenhauer, Meinhoffer.
Collegians hitting (ab-r-h-rbi) — Spencer Ibarra 3-2-0-0, Connor Leinbarger 3-0-1-1, Connor Messinger 2-0-0-0, Jaron Balman 3-0-1-0, Shane Olson 3-1-1-1, Davis Richardson 3-1-1-1, Drew Rosbottom 4-1-2-1, Pate Katechis 2-1-1-1, Jordan Faretta 1-1-0-0. Totals 24-7-7-5. HR —Olson, Rosbottom. SB —Katechis 3, Rosbottom.
Black Bears pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — O’Brien 3.1-5-4-3-5-0, Cate 1.2-2-3-2-4-1, Monje 1-0-0-0-1-2.
Collegians pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-so) — Dellaserra 5-4-2-2-0-3, Cremers 2-3-0-0-0-2.