Denny Brady’s pitch, hitting the Buena Blue Dawgs lift on SJ Surf in Game 1 of the Finals | local sports

NORTHFIELD — Denny Brady also likes to hit when he throws, and he made a big difference by doing both on Monday night in Game 1 of the South Jersey South Shore Baseball League Finals.

Brady led the Buena Blue Dawgs to a 5-3 victory over host South Jersey Surf at Birch Grove Park in the opener of a best-of-five series. He went the distance of seven innings to claim victory on the mound, giving up two solo homers but striking out 13 without a walk.

At the plate, Brady hit an imposing two-run homer that broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh inning. Luis Sauri was single.

The Blue Dawgs host the Surf at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Game 2 at Bruno Melini Park in Buena.

Brady, a former Buena Regional High School standout, spent five years in the Los Angeles Angels minor league system.

“I really like to hit when I throw, and I haven’t done that since high school,” the 25-year-old Brady said. “It’s exciting to be able to do them both again. It’s great to be in a championship series. The minor league teams made the playoffs when I was there.

People also read…

“We got off to a good start tonight. We got the win, and that’s all I care about.”

Buena coach Jim Kurtz said Brady helped the team with his guidance and example.

“For a guy who hasn’t swung a bat since high school, he’s unbelievable,” Kurtz said. “He’s our best hitter. He played at a higher level and he makes other people better.

“It was the kind of game I expected – really hard fought with quality shots from both teams. That’s what I expect in the series.”

The game was an oddity. For four innings, it was a pitching duel between Brady and Surf’s Carson Denham. Then it became a mini-home run derby as five homers were hit, three by Buena.

The Surf managed to make it 1-0 late in the second set when Antonio Caraballo scored on an error.

Denham surrendered a two-run homer to Buena’s Jack Peacock with two outs in the fifth inning to give the Blue Dawgs a 2-1 lead.

“I was looking for a fastball and I got it,” said Peacock, 20, a former St. Augustine Prep player. “I didn’t think it would come out at first, but it put two on the board.”

Denham gave up back-to-back homers to Brady and Jake Guglielmi in the seventh and was waived. Denham allowed three homers but retired eight and did not walk.

South Jersey slugger Monny Strickland tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the sixth inning when he hit a solo home run. Strickland is a former Egg Harbor Township and Rowan University player. Also for the Surf, Logan Petty hit a solo homer late in the seventh inning to make it 5-3. But Brady struck out the other three batters in the inning, one before the home run and the last two after.

“We had runners on base early in the game and missed a few chances to get more runs. That’s baseball,” said Surf manager Jeff Ball, a former major league player. “Both teams looked good. The pitching speed was very good and they were keeping the hitters off balance, but they made a few mistakes on homers.

“Tomorrow we must be ready to leave.”

Comments are closed.