Hot Hitting Continues For Prospects
By John Short

Shortstop Javier Ramirez and outfielder Pierce Blohowiak shone at the plate Sunday as the Edmonton Prospects extended their Western Canadian Baseball League winning streak to five games with a 10-2 victory over the Melville Millionaires.

More than 2,000 fans in comfortable weather at RE/MAX Field watched Ramirez collect two doubles and a triple in his four-hit performance. Blohowiak, emerging from a recent batting slump, had a couple of extra-base hits and drove in a team-leading three runs.

As usual lately, the Prospects built an early lead, sat comfortably for a few innings behind solid pitching, then erupted for big rallies in the dying innings. In three consecutive wins over the Millionaires, Edmonton struck for 28 runs while surrendering only six. A two-day break in the schedule leaves the Brooks Bombers as the opposition Wednesday and Thursday night.

Melville’s only scoring took place in the sixth. An infield error and a passed ball allowed Tanner Solomon and Marquis Irving to score unearned runs. One was charged to starter Austin Herrington and the other to Brendan Owens, one of five relievers who limited Melville to one walk while fanning five.

A costly throwing error put Edmonton on the board in the second inning. Nolan Walker’s base on balls was followed by a Ramirez infield grounder that might have become a double play. Instead a bad throw enabled both runners to score.

What ultimately stood up as the winning run occurred in the fifth. Davis Pratt walked, moved up on Travis Hunt’s base hit and scored on another infield error.

Edmonton’s narrow 3-2 edge grew immediately when Ramirez slashed a triple to the left field corner and trotted home on Jake McDonald’s single. Blohowiak then rapped another triple, scoring McDonald, and came home on a sacrifice fly by lead-off hitter Zach Thomas.

With their offence in high gear, the Prospects scored seemingly at will the rest of the way.

Top defensive plays drew plenty of attention on both sides. Once again, Hunt’s rifle arm led to a double play after his brilliant catch of a long fly in right field. A Melville runner attempting to return to first had no chance to survive. One inning later, a routine grounder to right field appeared to be a single but Hunt was perfectly positioned and nailed the hitter before he could reach first base.