Maple Leafs hot bats hammer Twins

Jeremy Walker’s grand slam highlighted a seven-run fifth inning and Dan Gibbons had six hits as the Toronto Maple Leafs ended the Intercounty Baseball League regular season with their seventh straight win, a 24-8 romp over the Burlington Twins in Burlington on Monday (July 25).

Toronto (22-13) grabbed second place in the IBL standings and will meet Burlington (9-25) in the first round of the playoffs. The schedule will be announced Tuesday, with the Leafs expected to open up either Wednesday or Thursday at Dominico Field at Christie Pits.

Toronto starter Jake Gallo really struggled and with second place at stake, the Leafs didn’t stay with him long, giving him the hook after three innings in which he allowed four runs on six hits with four walks and two strikeouts.

The Leaf bullpen then got the job done, however, with Brett Lawson’s scoreless fourth inning giving him credit for the win. And they got more than enough offensive support, as the Leafs also scored seven runs in the eighth inning. In total, the Leafs pounded out 20 hits to Burlington’s 11 during the contest.

Walker wound up with two hits and six RBI and Gibbons led the Toronto attack with his six hits and two RBI, while Kyle DeGrace had three hits, four runs scored and drove in two runs. Brian Ivan scored four runs and had two hits and Dan Marra homered and drove in three runs for the Leafs, who scored 17 runs in their win over London on Sunday.

Burlington starter Taylor Boyle went four innings and gave up four runs on five hits with two walks. Reliever Jon Fitzsimmons was the victim of the big fifth inning and took the loss, allowing seven runs on six hits in just one inning.

Adam Cholewka hit a pair of home runs and had five RBI among his three hits for the Twins in a losing cause. Ian Choy and Peter Bako also had two hits for Burlington.