Cat Osterman: Ali Aguilar of Orangevale hit a two-run single in the third inning to help the Americans improve to 3-0 in their quest to reclaim the Olympic gold title. Cat Osterman was not furious when she was turned down for a post in the United States coaching pool after she retired as a player in 2016.
She explained, “I had to perform a gut check.” “Why would I want to be in the coaching pool if I’m not unhappy about not getting chosen? And why is it that I don’t want to be in the coaching pool?”
So she’s back in the Olympics at age 38, and not just throwing but dominating.
Osterman pitched six innings of one-hit ball and Monica Abbott struck out the side in the seventh, helping the top-ranked U.S. shut out No. 5 Mexico 2-0 on Saturday.
“I’m here so they can win a gold medal because I already have one,” said Osterman, the last player remaining from the 2004 champions. “I want to see how they feel and how they react after we can do that.”
Osterman didn’t pitch competitively from 2016-18. At the Olympics, she and Abbott have combined on three one-hit shutouts over four days. Cat Osterman
“We have a tight family, and the two tall trees that are pitchers for us right now, they’ve kind of taken on the moniker of fire and ice,” U.S. coach Ken Eriksen said.
Osterman (2-0), who is 6-foot-3 like Abbott, has thrown 169 pitches and has allowed two hits in 12 innings with 13 strikeouts and one walk.
“Once I got the notion in my brain and my family was on board, my dad was like, ‘I told you you should have done this the whole time,'” she added of her resurrected playing career. “I had a lot of I told you so, but it was simply a gut check that I was doing it for the right reasons,” she says.
Osterman struck out four, walked one, and hit a batter. Pitching without a cap and with a white towel dangling from her back pocket on a 90-degree, humid afternoon, she retired her final 15 batters.
She escaped her only trouble in the second, when Suzannah Brookshire worked out an eight-pitch walk leading off and Victoria Vidales reached on an infield single that went off the glove of Kelsey Stewart at third. Chelsea Gonzales fouled out, Sashel Palacios took a called third strike and Stefania Aradillas struck out.