Bellingham turns to Way in Game 1 to close out victory

June 7, 2015

Brian Way baseball

Brian Way

One game, one save. At this point Brian Way of Sitka is on pace to break the West Coast League record.

Of course he won’t get a save every game, but to give him the ball in the first game of the season shows just how confident the Bellingham Bells are in their big right-hander.

Way, who just wrapped up his freshman season at Edmonds CC, danced around some early trouble before closing out a 4-3 win over Kitsap in front of a big home crowd.

“It was a great experience,” he told me. “Coming from Alaska, I’ve never pitched with more than 500 people watching and I guess 2,000 plus fans were there.

“The intensity was unbelievable I loved every second of it.”

The 6-foot-7, 270-pounder gave up back-to-back base hits to open the ninth inning, hardly the kind of first impression he wanted to make with his new club.

But he settled in, getting the next two guys to ground out before getting a strikeout to end the game.

“The first two batters I didn’t throw very good payoff pitches, I was just leaving off speed over the plate too much,” Way said. “But after those guys I calmed my nerves back down and started doing what I do, just staying down in the zone and getting ground balls. It was a blast and I can’t wait to throw again for these guys.”

At Edmonds, Way went 6-2 with a 1.76 ERA in 15 games. He had a 29-8 K-to-walks ratio in 49 innings.