Express Bash 19 Hits to Crush Border Cats 9-2
Eau Claire, WI- The Eau Claire Express (19-10 Second Half, 34-31 Overall) welcomed the Thunder Bay Border Cats (12-16 Second Half, 25-38 Overall) to Carson Park with a 9-2 beat down on Saturday night.
With the win, the Express maintain their tie with the Willmar Stingers atop the North Division second half standings. (Note: A Willmar loss on Saturday night would result in the Express taking sole possession of first place)
Through the game’s first six innings, Eau Claire starter Ryan Zimmerman (St Thomas) (4-2) dismantled Thunder Bay’s lineup, shutting out the Border Cats on three hits and nine strikeouts, earning himself Northwoods League Pitcher of the Night honors. Tonight’s outing was the fifth time Zimmerman pitched through the sixth inning this season, while his nine strikeouts tied his season-high for a K’s in a game, set back on June 25th in a start against Duluth.
Relievers Jake Sommers (UW Milwaukee), Manny Castellano (University of the Cumberlands), and Kenny Ogg (Ohio) each took care of an inning in the final third of the ball game. Summers and Ogg both tossed scoreless, one-strikeout frames. While Castellano ran into a bit of trouble in the eighth, surrendering two Border Cats’ runs on three hits and two walks.
Each member of the Express lineup reached base via a hit at least once, totaling 19 base knocks on the evening. Standing out from the pack was third baseman Trevor Schwecke (UW Milwaukee), who singled in all four of his trips to the plate while driving-in a run.
Eau Claire first baseman Kyle Marinconz (Cal Poly) connected on his second home run in as many days, lining a solo shot onto the fan deck in right field in the sixth. Marinconz ended up going 3-3 with two RBI, and was named Northwoods League Player of the Night.
The Express and Border Cats will be back to do it all again tomorrow night at 5:05 PM. Cody Dye (New Mexico) (1-1) will be on the bump for Eau Claire, coming off a fantastic five-inning, seven-strikeout performance in his last start on July 30th.
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.