Roman, Manuel, Richman Leading Baseball's Offense

Adrian Roman is among the leaders in the South Coast Conference in batting (photo by Richard Quinton).
Adrian Roman is among the leaders in the South Coast Conference in batting (photo by Richard Quinton).

The Pasadena City College baseball team is excited about the way a few hitters have excelled in the early going of the 2024 season. The Lancers are 4-3 overall as lefty-hitting first baseman Adrian Roman and catcher Mark Manuel have delivered the goods at the plate.

Roman had his fifth multi-hit game on Saturday and has hit safely in all seven of the Lancers games. The freshman is batting .481 with two doubles, a triple and six RBI as well as posting a .559 on-base percentage. Manuel, a sophomore transfer, is aiding the cause with a .429 average, five doubles, seven RBI, as he also has hit safely in each of the team's contests.

Roman is second in the South Coast Conference in batting while Manuel is fifth. 

Another offensive source has been freshman leftfielder-second baseman Bryan Richman, who has scored a team-high 12 runs (second in the SCC), driven in six RBI and a has a .400 on-base percentage despite a .231 average. 

"All three of these newcomers for us have produced, and we've needed that as others have yet to get their bats going," said PCC head coach Pat McGee. "It's not easy to hit consistently but both Adrian and Mark have done that every game while Bryan keeps making efficient, run-scoring at-bats, whether it's getting on base or driving in a run."

PCC trailed Victor Valley 5-0 on Friday and scored 11 unanswered runs in an 11-5 win at Brookside Park's Jackie Robinson Field. The top three batters in the Lancers lineup batted a combined 6-for-13, scored six runs and drove in five. 

The Lancers scored four runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to turn it around. Richman ripped a RBI double, then Manuel followed with a 2-run double that gave PCC an 8-5 lead. Letterman shortstop Jack Esguerra batted 2-for-3 with three runs scored as eight of the nine starters collected at least one hit.

Sophomore transfer hurler James Ferraro tossed three innings, allowing two and one unearned run in a non-decision while Joe Bacon earned his second victory with three innings of middle relief. Ernesto Duenas continues to shine as the frosh lefty pitched three innings of 3-hit, shutout relief for his third save in as many appearances.

On Saturday, Pasadena made an uncharacteristic five errors in the field and hit into four double plays, three that ended the last three innings of the game in a 10-3 home defeat v. Merced.a

Roman and Esguerra each were 2-for-4 while Richman knocked in two RBI (1-for-5). In the seventh, trailing 7-3, PCC had runners on first and second on singles by centerfielder Tyler Garcia and second baseman Ivan Barragan and appeared ready to launch another comeback. However, Merced third baseman Jacob Reyes made a spectacular diving stop on a hard shot that looked to be heading down the line on a ball hit by reserve third baseman Jesus Zuniga as Reyes tagged the third base bag and fired to first to complete an inning-ending, double play. 

Merced (3-6) got its big hit in a 5-run, third inning on a 3-run homer over the right-center field fence by Clay Curatchet. The Blue Devils scored at least one run each against all five of the Lancers pitchers thrown in the game with four of the runs scored unearned due to the defensive issues. 

Next Tuesday, Feb. 13, the Lancers return to Brookside for a 2 p.m. game v. West Los Angeles College. 

Mark Manuel applies the tag v. Victor Valley