Two new additions made immediate impacts for Blue Springs Post 499/Fike Wednesday.

Two new additions made immediate impacts for Blue Springs Post 499/Fike Wednesday.
Kellen Bartlett threw a complete game one-hitter, while Robbie Payton belted a home run as Fike pounded Independence VFW Post 1000 Bears 10-0 in its season opener.
Fike went on to beat the Bears 11-0 in the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader at Hidden Valley Park. The doubleheader was originally scheduled for Tuesday, but was rained out.
For Bartlett and Payton, the impacts came in their first game as members of Fike after successful baseball careers at Blue Springs South.
“That was definitely something we wanted to do,” Bartlett said about the good start. “Rob and I talked about it. They asked us to play, and we know they have high expectations for us. Hopefully we lived up to them.
“Rob definitely lived up to them.”
Fike manager Jim Moran said it wasn’t just the baseball ability that makes Bartlett and Payton good fits for the team.
“The thing about it is these are two quality young men,” he said. “It’s not just about their athletic ability. They’re quality kids who are fun to be around.”
The two joined a Fike team that finished second in the Fifth District and has many players back from that team.
“It was pretty easy,” Payton said of fitting in with the team. “We grew up with most of these guys and went to school with almost all of them. Any time you join a new team it’s iffy. But I think we mesh together well.”
And the way they played Wednesday helped.
Bartlett allowed only a bloop single to Cameron Barrett in five innings while striking out 10, including the last six batters he faced. Payton’s two-run home run was one of the highlights of a six-run fourth inning in the first game.
“I felt pretty good,” Bartlett said. “My arm was rested and felt good. The defense helped me.”
Fike (2-0, 2-0 Fifth District) also took advantage of four Bears errors.
In the second game, Fike again jumped out to a 3-0 lead entering the fourth before scoring four runs in both the fourth and fifth innings to win 11-0. A lot of the damage came as the Bears committed six errors.
Through three games this year the Bears (0-3, 0-2 Fifth District) have yet to score a run.
“We’re struggling a lot,” said Dustin Collins, who notched the only hit of the second game for the Bears. “They threw good pitches and kept the ball in the strike zone.
“We’ll be all right once we get the bats going.”
Part of that was Fike pitcher Stephan Keele in the second game. He struck out nine in the win.
“Our pitchers did throw the ball well,” Moran said. “Our pitchers did well and did what they had to do tonight. And our defense made good plays.”
A line drive for the Bears was turned into a double play by Fike shortstop Stephen Montisano. Fike also made several tough plays on foul balls to record outs.
Ross Taylor had three hits in the doubleheader and scored four runs. Montisano, Alex White and Kirk Huismann each scored a pair of runs in the second game.
Bears manager Bryan Drummond said his team is still trying to figure things out.
“We’re such a young team, we’re still learning,” he said. “We’re trying to figure out who our best nine are. Tonight I used 18 different boys. But I will find our best nine.
“It may take the whole season. It will take at least half the season (to come together). But we’ll work on it. By the Wood Bat tournament, you’ll see a different team.”