Brantford scored four times in the first inning as they paced themselves to an 8-4 victory over Hamilton for the Red Sox league-leading 23rd win of the senior Intercounty Baseball League Season on Sunday afternoon (July 8).
Losing their eighth game in a row, Hamilton drops to 5-23 on the season, six games behind Burlington who hold the eighth and final playoff spot. Burlington was thrashed by the Panthers, 25-8, in Kitchener Sunday night. The game was the Cardinals’ sixth annual Pink Ladies Day game to raise funds for Breast Cancer Support Services through ticket sales and draws. Over the six years the Cardinals have hosted the Pink Ladies Day game approximately $2,000 has been raised for Breast Cancer Support Services.
Offensive highlights included the Red Sox three-run home run from Tyler Patzalek and a two-run shot from Scott Thorman while the Cardinals’ Chike Springer had a two-run homerun in the bottom of the second and Zack Ranta went two-for-three at the plate.
Brantford opened the scoring when Josh McCurdy took the first pitch of the game for a double and moved to third on Thorman’s sacrifice fly. Lee Delfino’s single plated McCurdy. Jason Gotwalt followed Delfino with another single and both would score on Patzalek’s three-run homerun.
The Cardinals responded in the bottom of the second as Ranta opened the inning with a single and crossed the plate on Springer’s two-run shot over left field to cut the Brantford lead in half.
Unfortunately, the Red Sox got those runs back in the next half inning. Delfino walked and moved to second on Gotwalt’s second safety of the game. Both runners advanced a base as Patzalek laid down a sacrifice bunt. Kevin Hinton, the IBL’s all-time hits leader, grounded out but would bring in Delfino. Wayne Forman singled and brought home Gotwalt to regain the four run lead, making it 6-2 for Brantford.
In the bottom of the third Hamilton got leadoff batter Chris Redfern on with a single. He advanced to second on an error by Delfino and Matt McGraw’s sacrifice bunt sent Redfern to third base. Jon Saporsantos was hit by a pitch to put runners at the corners. A couple of batters later Ranta’s second singled of the game brought in a run. Justin Malabanan reached base on an error which brought in Saporsantos.
The Red Sox scored in the top of the sixth as Thorman hit a two-run home run to complete the scoring.
Matt Betts took the loss going six innings, allowing eight earned runs on nine hits, walking four batters, hitting one and striking out two. Neal Lambert took over for Betts to start the seventh allowing two hits to the six batters he faced. Nino Fasulo pitched the final two innings, walking one and striking out two of the seven batters faced.
For the Red Sox, Brian Sikorski went seven innings for his fifth win of the season. Sikorski went seven innings, allowing four runs, two of which were earned, on seven hits, walking one batter, hitting one batter, striking out seven, and throwing a wild pitch. Chris Chavez would pitch the eighth, striking out one batter. Adam Kudryk faced the final four Cardinals batters of the game; walking one and striking out one.
Hamilton travels to London on Tuesday to face the Majors. The Cardinals will return home on Friday to host the Ottawa Fat Cats for their only visit to town. Game time is 7:30 p.m.