Another Long Game
By John Short
If nothing else, the Edmonton Prospects can be counted on for extremely long games – so far, anyway – in the Western Canadian Baseball League.
After a one-run extra-inning marathon loss that extended for nearly five hours last week, the Prospects went through more than four hours of wide-open scoring before they bowed 13-12 to the Medicine Hat Mavericks.
Medicine Hat’s first three batters – Collin Klingensmith, Nolan Rattai and Austin Sojka – were outstanding. They combined for 10 of the 15 Maverick hits and shared 10 runs along with four runs-batted-in, all by Sojka. Rattai scored the winning run in the eighth on a two-out wild pitch.
Newcomer Brendan Luther and Beaux Guilbeau were Edmonton’s offensive leaders. Guilbeau whacked a homer and a sacrifice fly for four RBIs; Luther drew four bases on balls and scored four runs.
Each team was guilty of misplays on defence. Jackson Bandow, the first reliever after Austin Cannedy started, was charged with three unearned runs in the fifth inning on a two-error by Nolan Walker.
Obviously, the stretch of long and high-scoring games has taken a toll on Prospects pitchers. Medicine Hat scored in six separate innings, including a total of 10 runs between the first and fifth. Edmonton’s biggest inning was the six-run fourth, enough to create a temporary 9-4 lead. Javier Ramirez and Luther led off with walks and Edgar Harrell’s base on balls later loaded the bases with two out. Jake Gehri and Walker plated the runners with singles before Guilbeau launched a three-run homer, his first of the season.
Medicine Hat closed the gap with three runs in the bottom of the inning and took the lead with three more in the fifth. From that point, runs and runners were common for both teams.