By Nick Winstead
La Crosse, Wisc.—It got a bit scary at the end but the Bombers rolled into La Crosse and took game one of the two game series from the Loggers by a final score of 9-6. The Bombers move to .500 on the road trip, at 2-2, and 3-3 overall with the win.
It was the third start of the year for Andrew Mitchell (LSU) and he was a bit jumpy to start things out, the Loggers tagged him for three in the bottom of the first. As the game progressed Mitchell got into a groove—giving up just three more hits the rest of the game.
“I really found my velocity in the second inning and that helped me to get some swing and misses on my fastball and establish my pitches” commented Mitchell after the win.
The Bombers struck early against the Loggers, David Richards IV (Savannah State) had a leadoff single and after stealing second, his team leading ninth steal of the year, and advancing to third on a past ball Richards IV came in to score off of a Cody Kuzinczci (Northern Kentucky) groundout.
Cody’s run producing was just getting started. After being held scoreless through the fifth the Bombers got back to back singles through the first base side to kick off the sixth. That set the table for Kuzinczci to deliver some much need run support for the Bombers, and deliver he did.
Cody hit his first home run of the year, a three run shot, to tie the game at four.
“I feel like that homerun could not have come at a better time, especially at the start of the second half of the season” remarked Kuzinczci following the game.
His roundtripper was not the only one on the day for the Bombers Henri Lartigue (Ole Miss) made a trip around the bases on one swing of the bat as well—it was also his first on the year—which put the Bombers up 6-4.
“It felt pretty good” said Lartigue of his HR. “It’s the first one in a long time. It’s been over a year”
Lartigue was supposed to have the day off but came into the game in the second inning to take over the catching duties from Kuzinczci who moved over to first base.
Hunter Jobe (Pfeiffer) made his second appearance for the Bombers, taking over for Mitchell in the bottom of the fifth and allowed no runs to maintain a spotless ERA. He got into a little bit of trouble, however in the bottom of the eighth and left the game with two men on, and just one out.
Kyle Slack (Toledo) made just his second appearance out of the bullpen this year and threw one pitch to get out of the jam. A big chopper to Van Horn (Dallas Baptist) at shortstop turned into an inning ending double play. Things were not so easy for Slack in the ninth, though.
Before Slack reentered the game the Bombers plated three runs in the top half of the ninth giving them a 9-4 lead going into the bottom of the ninth.
A leadoff double got things going for the Loggers, Slack would get two quick outs but then loaded the bases on walks. Two runs would score before a grounder to Van Horn ended the game, sealing the Bombers second win as many days.
The Bombers will go for the sweep tomorrow as they take on the Loggers again, 7:05 central time first pitch.
Andrew Mitchell: 4.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 5 K.
WP: Hunter Jobe (1-0) 2.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K.
SV: Kyle Slack 1.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
Cody Kuzinczci: 2-4, HR (1), 5 RBI, 1 R.
Henri Lartigue: 2-3, HR (1), 2 RBI, 1 R.
The Battle Creek Bombers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 21st season of summer collegiate baseball, the Northwoods League is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 18 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 115 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (DET) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (STL) and Ben Zobrist (TB). For more information, visit http://www.battlecreekbombers.com”