By John Short
The Edmonton Prospects escaped the first inning against the Medicine Hat Mavericks without surrendering a run Tuesday night.
It was not an omen of things to come.
The Mavericks, playing to the level of last year’s Western Canadian Baseball League champs, collected 20 hits, accepted free passes without apology – five in the six-run third inning, for example – and wound up with a 13-3 triumph, climbing beyond the .500 mark in standings for the first time this season. With the defeat, Edmonton’s record fell to four wins and three losses. The rivals play again tonight (Wednesday) at RE/MAX Field.
Not one of five pitchers used by Prospects head coach Jordan Blundell managed to evade giving up at least one run. Starter Austin Herrington threw a whopping 81 pitches before being removed in the painful third inning. Up first in relief, Matt Erickson had control troubles of his own, but struck out five during a three-inning relief stint.
Edmonton’s pitching woes were made more evident because Medicine Hat starter Junior Pimental turned in an excellent performance, striking out nine and walking only a pair in six innings. One Prospects run followed a walk and hit batsman in the seventh and shortstop Javier Ramirez accounted for two RBIs with a ringing double in the eighth.
Every Maverick batter reached base at least once. Shortstop Collin Kingensmith collected five hits, while first baseman Sal Rodriguez went 1-for-1 – receiving bases on balls five times in the game, which lasted nearly four hours.