Machtemes hits, pitches Complete Performance to victory

By DN WRITING STAFF | June 26, 2022

Syracuse Jr. Chiefs players await teammate Alex Seward at home plate after his second-inning HR. 

By Sean Reilly 

John Machtemes came to Diamond Nation this weekend hoping to win a School’s Out tournament championship with his Complete Performance Baseball 12U team. 

The first crucial step in making that happen is to win the first game. 

Machtemes, his team’s No. 3 hitter and starting pitcher, drove in three runs with a ground out and two-run single as Complete Performance held off the Syracuse Junior Chiefs, 9-7, in the opener for both in Flemington. 

“Pitching wise, I was trying to make sure that my off-speed and breaking pitches were working, as well as getting my fastball in to get strikes and get ahead,” he said. “At the plate, I was looking to make contact and get on base. Hopefully we can get the championship, and this was a good way to start.” 

The game wasn’t decided until the final pitch, when Complete Performance reliever Joe Talamini – who entered with two-out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth – induced a game-ending ground out to third base. 

It was a back-and-forth game, which started with the North Jersey-based Complete Performance getting an RBI single from Antonio Paladino and run-scoring ground out to third from Machtemes in the top of the first.

The Chiefs got within 2-1 in the bottom of the inning, as Tre Ahern walked, stole second, moved to third on a ground out. He then scored on a single to shortstop from Mason Trendowski.

John Machtemes of Complete Performance Baseball hits ground ball to third base that scores teammate Antonio Paladino.

The Chiefs went up, 4-2, in the second inning after Alex Seward led off with a home run to right field and Eddie Hayden hit a two-run single with two out. 

Complete Performance responded with three runs in the third to go back in front, 5-4. Sean Guy led off with a double just inside the right field line, stole third and scored on a ground out from Michael Osh. After singles from Jake Duncan and Paladino, followed by a wild pitch that advanced both, a single by Machtemes scored both. 

Complete Performance added three more runs in the fourth to extend its lead to 8-4. An error brought the first run home, a wild pitch brought in the second and then Guy followed with a run-scoring triple to the wall in right-center.

A dropped infield fly scored a run for Syracuse in the bottom of the inning with the bases loaded and one out, but some base-running confusion after the drop resulted in an inning-ending double play. 

Complete Performance got an RBI base hit from Jake Astmann in the top of the sixth to increase its lead to 9-5.

Syracuse started the bottom of the sixth with first-pitch singles from Evan Zaccheo, Anthony Schettine and Ahern that loaded the bases. A fielder’s choice from Trendowski scored the first run and before Seward drew a bases-loaded walk with two out. After a pitching change, Talamini induced the game-ending ground out.

Complete Performance would drop pool play games to Locked In Expos on Saturday and the Dust Devils on Sunday.

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