By Luke Tanaka, Radio Broadcaster
Mequon, Wis. – Pitching ruled the night as the Battle Creek Bombers settled for a split with a 2-0 loss to the Lakeshore Chinooks. Min Hsia (Taiwan) and Dalton Greenwalt (Urbana) combined to allow just two runs and six hits, but were outdueled by a Lakeshore staff that limited the Bombers' bats to no runs and three hits. Battle Creek only had one runner reach third base in the ballgame.
The Chinooks put a run on the board in the first. Anthony Massicci (Canisius) singled to left and Jake Romano (Miami-Ohio) followed with a ground ball back up the middle. Both runners stole a base and Doug Kraeger (Richmond) knocked in Massicci with a sacrifice fly.
From there, both starters were dominant. The Bombers’ Hsia allowed just two base runners on two singles in his next four innings. On the other side, Joe Stoll (Ohio State) allowed just one hit and one walk in his first six innings. At one point, he sat down 14 consecutive Bombers hitters.
Lakeshore used consecutive hits to set up a rally off of Hsia in the sixth inning. Lucas Raley (Lake Erie) singled and Kraeger doubled to center, his second hit of the game. The Bombers called upon Greenwalt and the reliever forced a quick fielder’s choice to Josh Smith (Grand Valley State). With two away, Greenwalt used a first-to-third pickoff move to catch Colby Fitch (Louisville) in a rundown. As Dre Gleason (Austin Peay) chased Fitch to second, Kraeger darted home and scored when Gleason’s throw came late. With the score now 2-0, Greenwalt forced a quick out to end the inning.
The Bombers threatened for the first time against Stoll in the seventh. Gleason and Gary Russo (Miami-Ohio) singled and Niko Pacheco (Cal State Fullerton) walked to load the bases with nobody out. But Stoll escaped the jam with a fielder’s choice and a pair of strikeouts.
The Bombers did not reach base in the eighth and ninth, as they settled for the split with the Chinooks.
Hsia ended his outing with 5 1-3 innings, allowing two runs, six hits, no walks, and striking out four. Greenwalt hit two batters, but did not allow a hit or run.
Battle Creek’s three hits were spread out between Dan Swain (Siena), Gleason, and Russo. Cayce Bredlau (Austin Peay) and Pacheco also reached base via walks.
Stoll ended his outing allowing three hits, two walks, and no runs, while striking out eight in seven innings. Jack Landwehr (Illinois State) used just two pitches to record his first two outs and retired all six batters he faced to finish the ballgame.
Kraeger led the Lakeshore offense with a pair of hits, an RBI, and a run scored. His double to deep center was the only extra-base hit of the game. Romano added two singles and Massicci scored the first-inning run.
The Bombers move their road trip to Madison tomorrow for game one against the Mallards. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. Central time.
The Battle Creek Bombers are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. Playing its 22nd 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 120 Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (CWS), Jordan Zimmermann (WAS), Curtis Granderson (NYM), Allen Craig (BOS) and Ben Zobrist (OAK). For more information, visit www.battlecreekbombers.com.
(Feature story photo courtesy of Battle Creek Photography and Design – Levi Green)