Twins six-run rally sends Cardinals packing

The visiting Hamilton Cardinals carried an 8-3 lead into the bottom of the seventh inning, but it wasn’t enough.

The host Burlington Twins scored six runs during their at-bats and went on to win the senior Intercounty Baseball League game, 11-8. The loss extends the Cardinals’ losing streak to five games and puts them 4 1/2 games out of the final playoff spot held by the Twins.

Hamilton got off to a good start scoring three runs in the second inning. Zack Ranta opened the inning by drawing a walk. With two outs Colin Porter and Ryan Taylor each singled and Ranta came home on Taylor’s safety. Porter and Taylor scored when Nathan Smith doubled.

Ranta doubled in the third inning and moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on a passed ball to give Hamilton a 4-0 lead.

The Twins pulled to within one run after scoring three times their half of the third. Jamie Lekas walked to open the inning and advanced to second when Mattingly Romanin reached base on an error. Both runners came home on Branson Joseph’s two-out home run to cut the Hamilton lead to 4-3.

The Cardinals got one run back in the fourth as Andrew Jacinto doubled and then stole third base, scoring when the throw to third was wild. Hamilton added to its lead in the seventh when Justin Malabanan walked and moved to second on Dan Jagdeo’s single. Both scored when Ranta doubled and he scored on Porter’s fielder’s choice.

Burlington’s six-run outburst started when Adam Cholewka laced a bases-loaded single to cash in two runs. After Jeff Kosta was hit by a pitch to again load the bases, pinch hitter Kyle Gappand doubled to bring in two more runs.

Zach Elbirt, pinch hitting for Phil Steer, singled in the eventual game winning run for the Twins.

Burlington capped off the scoring with two more runs in the bottom of the eighth on Ryan Asis’ two-run home run.

For Hamilton, Brett van Pelt started the game and went six innings allowing three unearned runs on seven hits while walking three batters and striking out three. Matt Betts replaced van Pelt after he faced two batters in the seventh. Betts was tagged with the loss after allowing six earned runs, all earned, on three this while walking one and hitting another batter. Nino Fasulo finished the game for the Cardinals.

For Burlington, Matthew St. Kitts started the game and went six innings allowing five runs, three of which were earned, on nine hits, walking three batters, hitting one and striking out six. Jeff Davis took over for the Twins in the seventh but could not record an out. He was charged with three earned runs on two hits and a walk.

Alex Gale came in and got the win, going two and a third innings allowing two hits, a walk and striking out three batters. Jeff MacLeod finished the game and earned the save going two thirds of an inning allowing a walk and striking out one of the three batters he faced.

Hamilton returns home and will host the Kitchener Panthers on Friday (July 6) at 7:30 p.m. This game was originally scheduled for June 1 but was cancelled due to rain. Burlington will travel to Brantford on Friday.