The Mallards return to the Duck Pond for a weekend showdown with division rival La Crosse. This will be the second of four two-game sets that Madison and La Crosse will have against each other this season. The Mallards ended their two-game losing streak Friday night with a 5-3 win over Duluth, and La Crosse was shutout by Battle Creek 1-0.
Madison starts right-hander Scott Heitshusen, who is 3-1 with a 3.80 ERA. Heitshusen’s three wins leads the Mallards pitching staff in addition to his 15 strikeouts in 21.1 innings pitched.
Heitshusen has won two straight starts, and in his last appearance, went six innings of work, allowing three earned runs on seven hits and four strikeouts against Waterloo on June 24 to go 3-1.
La Crosse starts right-hander Cole White, who makes his third start of the season on the mound. White is 1-1 with a 4.05 ERA and eight strikeouts in 13.1 innings of work.
Along with his ability to pitch, White is solid with the bat batting .386 with one home run, two doubles and six runs batted in.
The Mallards offense is improving as of late, and a few key players have been the cause of it. Jordan Comadena has gone 10-for-30 (.333) with five runs scored and three RBIs in his last 10 games. Comadena went 3-for-6 (.500) with two stolen bases in the recent two game series against Duluth.
Catcher Eric Nielsen is on a three-game hitting streak and has gone 7-for-17 (.412) with a run batted in and two runs scored in his last 10 games. Daniel Webb will be activated for the series after suffering an ankle injury on June 18 at Waterloo. Up until that point, Webb was batting .310 with 10 RBIs.
First baseman Neil Medchill has enjoyed success against the Loggers this season, as he enters Saturday batting .500 (3-for-6) with two runs scored, one double and three runs batted in against La Crosse pitching.
As for La Crosse, Evan Bigley is tied for second in the Northwoods League with four home runs and fourth with 18 runs batted in. James Viscomi leads the Loggers with 10 stolen bases, and much of his successful base running is balanced out by his way of spreading the ball all over the field, as he is batting .320 with two home runs and 11 runs scored.
This series can also be a great opportunity for fans to watch two of the top closers in the NWL — La Crosse’s Don Erdall and Madison’s Bubba O’Donnell. Erdall leads the NWL with 10 saves, and O’Donnell is right behind him with seven. With tough pitchers such as these two coming out of the pen it will be difficult for both teams to get any success at the plate in the late innings.
Saturday is Rhythm & Booms along with Meriter & Physicians Plus Insurance Kick Ball Night.
Mallards Kick Balls will be given to the first 1,000 kids 14 & under. Kids can enjoy a kick ball game on the field after the game! The movie “Angels in the Outfield“ will be featured after the Big Fireworks Show, presented by Life Style Staffing.
Sunday is St. Mary Hospital Madison Blues Turn-Back-the-Clock-Night. Mallards will wear replica 1930 style Madison Blues Uniforms, and the first 500 kids and the first 500 seniors will receive a replica Blues hat.
Live Blues music pre- & post-game with Westside Andy will be featured. Remember, admission is free for everyone over the age of 60 and Pepsi Baseball Gloves for the first 1,000 kids 14 & under!