T-Birds not out of the running for a playoff berth

thunderbirdsGetting off to a terrible start in the senior Intercounty Baseball League hasn’t dulled the Hamilton Thunderbirds’ hopes of making the playoffs.

Playing in Brantford on Tuesday night, David Hucsko and two relievers combined on a five-hit shutout as Hamilton stunned the Red Sox 7-0. It was just the fourth win of the season for the T-Birds (4-20) who moved to within three games of the eighth place Mississauga Twins for the final playoff spot in the IBL.

The Red Sox slipped to 15-8 with the loss, falling into third place in the IBL.

Hucsko went five innings, allowing five hits with three strikeouts and two walks. Paul McKenna then came on to pitch three hitless innings of relief, walking just one batter, and Ryan Sharpe finished up with a perfect ninth.

Sharpe sparked the Hamilton attack with a pair of hits and a run scored, as the Thunderbirds broke open the game with three runs in the sixth inning. Jon Saporsantos also had two hits for Hamilton. Hamilton finished the night with 11 hits.

Loser Brad Hogeterp went 5 1/3 innings, allowing six runs – five earned – on nine hits, striking out one and walking one.

There are three games in the IBL tonight (Thursday) with Hamilton in Barrie to play the Baycats, the Red Sox travel to Kitchener to meet the Panthers, and the Mississauga Twins face the Dodgers in Oshawa. All games are 7:30 p.m. starts.