The Hamilton Cardinals AAA Major Bantams split a doubleheader with the Stratford Indians in Inter-County Baseball Association play. Hamilton lost the opener, 3-2, but rebounded to take the second game, 15-4.
The first game, the Cardinals lost a “heartbreaker” in the bottom of the 9th.
After going out in order in the top of the first, Cards’ pitcher Jeremy Holmes loaded the bases in the bottom of the frame but the Indians failed to score leaving three stranded. The pitching and defense on both sides kept the game scoreless until the Indians scored one run in the bottom of the sixth. Owen-Angus Yamada tied the score with a fly out RBI in the top of the seventh.
Angus-Yamada took the mound in the bottom of the eighth and held the Indians off the scoreboard. Ty Porter gave the Cards the lead with a fly out RBI in the top of the ninth. Angus-Yamada failed to protect the lead and allowed the Indians to score two and take the game.
Indians coach Jeff Morris said, “Now, that was a ballgame! It could have gone either way. Both teams played very well.”
In the second game, filled with a terrible resolve from losing the first game, the Cards offence took flight in the top of the opening inning, scoring four. Porter got a two-run RBI and Richard Minken got a groundout RBI. Porter also stole home on a wild pitch.
Card pitching ace Justin O’Reilly took the mound in the bottom of the first and allowed one run and one hit.
The Cards bats awoke in the top of the fourth. Minken got his second RBI. Braden Johnston got an RBI and later scored on a wild pitch. Jeremy Holmes had a RBI and Christian Nunez got a two-run RBI. When the dust settled, the Cards had built an 11-1 lead.
The Indians got a couple back in the bottom of the fourth with an earned and an unearned run. The Indians got a couple more runs in the bottom of the sixth. The Cards responded scoring four times in the seventh. Grant Preece stole home on a wild pitch and Porter got his second two-run RBI of the game and stole home for the second time. Porter accounted for six runs in the 15-4 beating.
“It was tough to lose our first game,” said Cardinals’ coach Rich Minken. “Our bats came alive in the second game. Credit to Hayden Bailey (injured his groin muscle) who stayed in the game and played hurt. We would have had to forfeit the game.”