Express Take 12-4 Defeat in La Crosse
La Crosse, WI- Coming off a 5-0 win over the St. Cloud Rox, the Eau Claire Express (5-6 Second Half, 20-27 Overall) found themselves on the wrong end of a 12-4 beat down at the hands of the La Crosse Loggers (4-7 Second Half, 18-27 Overall) on Saturday night.
Eau Claire starter Aaron Shortridge (California) (4-2) was roughed up for eight earned runs over four innings of work, marking a low point in what has been a spectacular season for the right-handed sophomore in 2017. Shortridge had pitched into the seventh inning or later without allowing more than two earned runs in each of his four starts this year, making tonight’s seven-hit bombardment more of an outlier than a cause for concern moving forward.
Emanuel Castellano (University of the Cumberlands) made his first appearance with the Express this season when he relieved Shortridge to start the fifth. Over 2.2 innings pitched, the lefty junior allowed one earned run on four hits, striking out two and walking three. In six games with Eau Claire last season, Castellano ran an ERA of 1.97 in both a starting and bullpen role.
Entering the game in the eighth and finishing off the ninth on the mound for the Express, Cody Dye (New Mexico) (0-1) surrendered three additional La Crosse runs to score to wrap up a tough evening for the Eau Claire pitching staff.
The Express offense scored four runs on 10 hits, lead by a couple of 2-4 nights from outfielder Zach Ashford (Fresno State) and catcher Ty Greene (California). Ashford drove in a run and scored two, launching his first homer of the season in the fifth, while Greene collected two RBI when he laced a two-run single in the third.
Eau Claire will be back in La Crosse to take on the Loggers once more at 5:05 PM on Sunday before the three-day All-Star break begins on July 17th. Lane Ramsey (Oklahoma) (0-2) is scheduled to get the nod on the mound for the Express tomorrow, as he’ll look to bounce back from tough outing back on July 10th in Duluth, in which he allowed six runs over five frames.
The Eau Claire Express are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, more than 180 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.eauclaireexpress.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Express as your favorite team.