Three unearned runs, more strong relief pivotal in 6-2 road victory
BOLIVAR, Mo. — The Chillicothe Mudcats college-level, wood-bat baseball team made it 2-straight weekend sweeps of the Branson Nationals Sunday evening, this time taking a pair on the Nats’ home field.
The Fish followed up on Saturday’s last-inning comeback win with a front-running 6-2 victory at Southwest Baptist University’s Fred Handler Field last night.
Four Mudcats pitchers held Branson to five hits and two runs to give Chillicothe a clean sweep of the 4-games season series between itself and the MINK League’s newest member. The Fish won twice in Chillicothe June 6-7 before this past weekend’s pair of victories.
The Mudcats now come home to battle the St. Joseph Mustangs for the league’s North Division lead Monday.
The Mustangs, 3-1 winners at Sedalia Sunday, visit “June” Shaffer Memorial Park stadium for a 7:05 p.m. game a half-game ahead of the Mudcats, who have claimed three straight, five of their last six, and seven of nine.
Yesterday’s action saw Chillicothe starting pitcher Mark Roberts (1-1) give up a 2-outs solo home run to Ryan Rippee in the first inning, but avoiding a worse early fate by throwing a double-play grounder right before that.
Chillicothe got that run back in its second on Norry Galjour’s RBI single that scored Michael Klein.
In the top of the third, Jarod Hahn singled in the go-ahead run. Another scored on Al Robbins’ fielder’s choice and a fourth Mudcats run of the game came in on one of five Nats errors.
Ahead 4-1 after three, the Mudcats did their last scoring in the fourth when a 2-outs error on a ball hit by Todd Czinege let Josh Ethier and Corban Williams to cross the plate.
Truman Stat’s Roberts (1-1) allowed his second run in the Branson fourth, but left fielder Hahn cut down a runner at third to end the inning. From there, Roberts and relievers Josh Guerra, Derringer Huff, and Austin Kerns blanked Branson the final five innings.