COLONIALS CRUISE, RUSH WALK-OFF ON DAY 17
By: Thaddeus Krzus
PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – Day 17 of the 2016 California Winter League season saw offensive outbursts on the Auxiliary Field and a walk-off at the main stadium to cap off an exciting week in Palm Springs.
The Auxiliary Field started the day with an offensive explosion for the New York Colonials, as the boys in red, white and blue plated at least one run in every inning of their 12-3 victory over the Coachella Valley Snowbirds.
Alex Simone finished with a perfect 4-for-4 day at the dish, plating two runs and scoring twice, raising his batting average from .333 to .474 for New York (7-4-1).
Zach Sacoman earned his third win of the season, tossing 4.2 innings and giving up just one run and setting down three Snowbirds on strikes.
Yuta Idogawa collected three hits for Coachella Valley (3-10), and is currently riding a five-game hitting streak in which the 18-year-old is hitting .471 (8-for-17).
The Bay Area Bootleggers used a four-run sixth inning to pull away from the Palm Springs Power (6-6) in the middle game from the Auxiliary Field, sending the Power to a 6-1 defeat.
Dalton Tinsley tripled to start the inning and scored two batters later on Paul Moreno’s RBI groundout to stretch Bay Area’s (4-8-1) lead to two. A single by Niko Ruiz scored Nathan Lewellyn from second to stretch the lead to three, and David Kimbrough’s RBI triple made it a four-run advantage for the Bootleggers.
Clay Ragland pushed across the final run of the frame with a run-scoring single.
Bootleggers’ starting pitcher Josh Wright earned his first win of the season, striking out six over six innings.
The Palm Springs Chill (7-4-1) rode a three-run sixth to jump back in the win column after being shutout by the Toronto Rush on Thursday, with a 4-2 victory over the Canada A’s (9-4) at Palm Springs Stadium.
Brandon Kiser singled and Josh Eatherly doubled to start the frame and set up a scoring situation with nobody out for the Chill. After a fly out by Chris Knouse, Tanner Laran’s sacrifice fly to right field plated Kiser for the go-ahead score. Eatherly would score on a wild pitch to Takuma Muroi to score the second run of the inning and pad the lead.
Muroi moved up to second after a walk to Devin Alexander and scored when Robert Latner reached on an error by Dan Gryzwa.
Tyler Pearson earned his second win of the season for Palm Springs by allowing two runs on two hits, and striking out eight over his six innings of work.
Toronto (9-4) won its third-consecutive game with a thrilling 2-1 victory over the British Columbia Bombers (4-8-1) in eight innings to close out the day at Palm Springs Stadium.
Apolinar de la Cruz was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second for the Rush, and Marcus Blackmon, Jr. executed a sacrifice bunt to advance the runners 90 feet. An intentional walk to Bradley McQuinn loaded the bases, setting up Joe Davis’ rocket into left field to score Kevin Wirth for the walk-off.
Kyle Kennett did not factor in the decision, but allowed only one run on one hit and eight punch outs in five innings.
The final game of the day saw the Midwest Haymakers win a wild one over the Palm Desert Coyotes (5-7-1), 7-6.
Midwest (5-7) scored all seven runs after trailing 6-0 going into the home half of the second frame, but scored once in the second, twice in the third, and four times in the fourth to pull off the comeback.
Beau Riportella went 1-for-2 on the day and scored twice for the Haymakers, while Nicholas Zaharion picked up a hit of his own and drove in a run.
The league will take a collective off day on Sunday, and spring back to action with a full slate of games on Monday.
The three games on the Auxiliary Field start off with a rematch between the Bombers and the Rush at 8 a.m., followed by the Chill and Washington Blue Sox at 11 a.m., and finish with the Oregon Lumberjacks and the current No. 1 team in CWL, the Manitoba North Stars, at 1:30 p.m.
Palm Springs Stadium will feature the Power taking on the Colonials at 10 a.m., with the Haymakers and Alberta Grizzly facing off at 12:30 p.m.
Monday is also “Local Day” at the stadium, where Coachella Valley residents can get into the games at the main stadium for just $2.