Prospects Win Streak Hits Five With Impressive Win
By Len Nunes
The Prospects improved their record at RE/MAX Field to 13-4 after jumping out to a 20-0 lead against the 2nd place in the Eastern Division Regina Red Sox. The win brings the Prospects record back to .500 and increases their win streak to 5 games. For the second consecutive game each Prospects starting position player collected at least one hit.
Prospects starting pitcher Connor Burns has now pitched 14 straight scoreless innings. Burns pitched 5 innings of 1-hit baseball striking out 7 batters along the way Tuesday night. It was almost a carbon copy of his prior start in which he pitched 5 innings of 2-hit ball. The Melville Millionaires are the last team to score against Burns when they scored 3 runs in the 3rd inning.
The Prospects offence started in the bottom of the 2nd with a Beaux Guilbeau lead-off walk followed by a Daylen Calicdan single. Tony Olson brought them both home with a 2-out single to right field.
Nick Spillman and Eric Crain started the bottom of the 3rd with back-to-back singles. Guilbeau knocked in Spillman making it 3-0 for the Prospects. With the bases loaded Michael Gahan dropped a single to center field for a RBI. With the bases still loaded AJ Nitzschke earned a painful RBI getting plunked by a pitch making it 5-0.
With Crain and Guilbeau aboard in the bottom of the 4th, Calicdan hit his first triple of the season cashing in both runners. Anthony Cusati hit his team leading 9th double of the season bringing home Calicdan. With the bases loaded, Olson batted into a productive out to score the lead runner. Zane Takar would make it 10-0 with a single to right field plating Gahan.
The Prospects loaded the bases in the bottom of the 5th and were able to score three times without even getting a hit. Guilbeau with his 2nd lead-off walk of the night was followed by Calicdan getting drilled by a pitch. For precautionary reason Calicdan left the game being replaced by Percy Liu. Cusati drew his 2nd walk of the night. With Olson at the plate, a balk scored the lead runner then a wild pitch scored the second runner. To finish clearing the bases Olson reached base on a fielding error. 13-0 nothing Prospects!
Singles by Spillman, Crain and Guilbeau loaded the bases to start the bottom of the 6th. Liu was hit by a pitch giving him a bruise and a RBI. With Jake MacDonald, subbing in for Cusati, at the dish another Red Sox wild pitch brought in run number 15 of the evening for the Prospects. Gahan reached on a defensive error which allowed another Prospects run to score then Nitzschke hit his 2nd double of the season scoring two more runs. A Takhar groundout scored Nitzschke making it 19-0. Spillman came up to bat for the 2nd time in the inning and singled again driving in the 20th and final Prospects run of the night. Finishing 3-for-4 at the plate, Spillman improved his batting average to a league best .392!
One of the difficult aspects of the game of baseball is that there is no "coast to the end" option. In football you can kill clock by simply running the ball into the line. In basketball you can dribble out the shot clock. In hockey you can choose whether to shoot or just keep passing the puck around. Well, in baseball you have to keep throwing the ball over the plate and you have to keep playing defense.
Dylan Emmons and Scott Gillespie each pitched two innings in the difficult situation of protecting an insurmountable lead. Athletes are trained to perform under pressure, so coming into such a big lead and such little pressure must be hard. Emmons and Gillespie would each be touched for three runs against but the Prospects easily held on to win 20-6.
PLAYER OF THE GAME
A tip of the cap to the entire batting order of the Edmonton Prospects but the Player of the Game nomination goes to starting pitcher Connor Burns. Regina as a team is in the top half of all major batting categories and they only managed a single versus Burns.
Wednesday July 18 vs Medicine Hat - Faith and Family Day in support of The Mustard Seed - 7PM
Thursday July 19 vs Medicine Hat – Pre-game Business Mixer - 7:05 PM First Pitch
Friday July 20 vs Regina - Edmonton Trappers Night featuring Ron Kittle! 7:05 PM First Pitch The legendary John Short will be hosting a pre-game "Sportstalk" with Kittle and fellow Edmonton Trappers Icons GM Mel Kowalchuk and play-by-play voice Al Coates at 5PM in the lounge.