(Clarinda) -- The Clarinda A's are down to their final two home games in what has been a challenging season, according to Field Manager Ryan Eberly.
The A's were right around the .500 mark in MINK League play for much of the year before a week-long losing streak took them out of contention for the MINK Playoffs and a spot in this year's NBC World Series.
Adding to the frustration is the storm damage from earlier this week at Municipal Stadium, leaving the visiting team without a dugout for the final three home games of the season. The lack of a dugout didn't bother Chillicothe in the first of those games on Wednesday as the Mudcats hung on to the second spot in the north division standings with an 8-5 win over Clarinda.
The A's are just 14-25 in the MINK now and Eberly says the troubles this season started with preseason recruiting.
"We had everybody locked up before Christmas," Eberly said on Thursday's Sports Feature, "but then May first hit and suddenly we were scrambling. I think only seven or eight guys on our original roster are here. It seems every time we get two pitchers in, then two would leave. It's been an uphill battle. As far as the kids that are here, they have been great off the field, doing things in the community, so you can't ask for anything more than that."
Eberly says while they have been good off the field, he has been disappointed with the effort each night on the field.
"Effort is something you have within yourself," says Eberly. "As a young athlete, that is probably the number one thing you need to have. Whatever is in your tank, it gets emptied each night, but it just seems kids aren't willing to do that."
The A's have had a couple strong bats in the middle of the order. Eric Wagaman and Wells Davis are a pair of freshmen who lead the league in home runs and RBI.
"You hope you can get those kind of kids back," says Eberly. "Eric Wagaman is a junior college kid from Orange Coast (CA) and leads the league in RBI. Wells Davis only had three or four at-bats at South Alabama, but is tied with Wagaman to lead the league in home runs. It's a positive thing there with freshmen being able to do that. If you can get them back, you got something started with your three and four holes filled."
Eberly adds the pitching has struggled at times, saying it seems when the pitching does come together the defense struggles.
The full feature with Eberly can be heard again at around 1:45 and 6:25 on KMA 960. It's also available by clicking the audio link below.
The remaining schedule for the A's can be found below.
Friday - Omaha
Saturday - @ St. Joseph
Sunday - St. Joseph
Monday - @ Joplin (will only be played if Joplin needs game for postseason qualification purposes)
Photos courtesy of Joe Moore @ J&C Photography, Clarinda
Tag(s): Clarinda A's