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York junior Santos makes seamless transition from reliever to starter

HINSDALE – After being used as a reliever for the beginning of the year, York’s Anthony Santos is settling into a starting role.

The junior made his third West Suburban Silver start and kept Hinsdale Central off balance with a heavy dose of fastballs in a 5-3 York win Monday in Hinsdale.

Santos threw a complete game and gave up no earned runs in the rubber game of the series.

“He’s been pretty solid as our third-game guy of a three-game series,” said York coach Dave Kalal. “He’s been able to come in and shut the door for us. We’ve kind of eased him along a little bit to make sure his arm was in pretty good shape before we threw him out there.”

Part of the process of easing him into the rotation was throwing exclusively fastballs on Monday. Santos was able to limit the Red Devils’ offense by frequently getting ahead in the count.

“I usually mix it up a lot,” Santos said. “These guys are really good hitters, but for some reason they couldn’t touch my fastball that much.”

The move from the bullpen to a starting spot has been welcomed with open arms by Santos, and he has taken advantage of it.

“It’s been working well,” he said. “I enjoy the pressure.”

Santos has also been a key player for the Dukes offensively. He plays first base when he isn’t pitching and usually hits in the No. 3 hole.

“Hitting-wise, I’ve been doing well,” Santos said. “I’ve been getting a lot of offspeed because I’m in the No. 3 hole, but my teammates are picking me up if I’m not hitting.”

York won the series despite losing Game 1 17-1. York’s River Pitlock outdueled Central’s Adam Dressler in a battle of Division I recruits in Game 2 for a 2-1 Duke win.

York improved to 7-8 in the West Suburban Silver after Wednesday’s 18-2 win over Proviso West. The Dukes have an off weekend from Silver action before the final conference series of the season against Lyons Township on May 11 and 13.

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