Delhomme Drillers left-hander Derek Boutin put on a show.
The 6-foot-3 left-hander threw a complete-game nine-inning shutout, striking out 17 and walking only one in a 1-0 victory over Gauthier & Amedee in an elimination game of the American Legion State Tournament at Kirsch-Rooney Park.
With the win, the Drillers advance to take on the winner of Tuesday’s late game between Retif Oil and River Ridge at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.
“I was trying to survive on that one run,” Boutin said.T“I have to give credit to my teammates to make the plays to help us win the game. I couldn’t have done it without them. With the exception of a couple of change-ups, I really feel like I was commanding the zone throughout the game. My slider was working really well.
“As a starting pitcher, you can’t just rely on the fastball. I was really commanding my slider in and off the plate. I feel like that had a lot to do with my success.”
Delhomme’s lone run came in the top of the second inning. With one out, Hill Babineaux singled. Back-to-back walks to Tyler Laporte and Richard Hebert loaded the bases. Babineaux scored on a balk by Gauthier & Amedee’s Brennan Grant.
Boutin’s twin brother Devin, who is younger by only five minutes, caught his older brother’s win.
“Seeing my brother pitch like that was just impressive,” he said. “We just connected, and we knew what pitches to throw. Every pitch was on today, and I couldn’t ask for more from him. It was just fun to catch a game like this today.
“By far this was one of the best games we played this season. We are just enjoying the moment. Every pitch he was throwing was working.”
Completing the trio, the Boutin twins father Donnie coached the game from the dugout.
“I was talking to the umpires late in the game in between inning, and we were just talking about how a game like this is what baseball is all about. This was two solid teams coming up against each other, and we beat a really good team in Gauthier & Amedee today. They really are a good team.
“The thing about our team is we scrap, and we did that today. We knew pitching and defense would be our strength today. It came through for us today. We are blessed to be able to come out victorious.”
Grant was equally as impressive on the mound, giving up only one run in nine innings on four hits, striking out 13 and walking two.
“This was a tough loss to swallow,” Grant said. “Especially when the one run is coming off a balk. I thought other than that (Boutin) was one walk better than me, and that was it. Hats off to him. He did an amazing job and was easily the best pitcher we faced all year long.”