TORONTO – Kyle Morton homered, had three hits and drove in four runs as the last place Burlington Bandits mauled the Toronto Maple Leafs, 10-4, in an Intercounty Baseball League game shortened to five innings by rain on Sunday afternoon (July 7) at Christie Pits’ Dominico Field.
Toronto (11-15) has now lost four straight games at home and is a most uncharacteristic 6-8 at the Pits this season, as once again they fell victim to some sub-par pitching – although the Bandits nearly cost themselves the rain-abbreviated win by taking too long to close out the bottom of the fifth inning.
Leading 10-2 and with the skies threatening again after rain interrupted the game for 29 minutes in the third, Burlington (6-19) made a pitching change and had several trips to the mound for conferences during the inning, despite needing just three outs to make it an official game. The Leafs scored twice before the third out of the inning, a strikeout by Rob Gillis, was made in a torrential downpour, with the game immediately stopped after the out.
The close call with the weather was the only thing close about this one, as the Leafs lost for the second time to the Bandits at home, and have now allowed 58 runs in their last 32 innings at the Pits.
The Bandits put the Leafs in a big hole, scoring four runs in the first and another in the second.
Starter Jason Rubenstein went 4 2/3 innings, allowing four runs – two earned – on seven hits with one strikeout and four walks. But he helped cost himself the win when he couldn’t close out the fifth, with his two-out throwing error keeping the Leafs at bat. Matthew St. Kitts relieved him and faced just one batter – Gillis – in what was by then a driving rain, and got credit for the victory with his one strikeout.
Peter Bako and Nick Studer both had two hits and two RBI for the Bandits, who had 12 hits. Ryan Clarke also had two hits and scored twice for the winners.
Toronto starter Marek Deska was roughed up again, allowing six runs – five earned – on nine hits in just four innings, striking out two and walking four. Reliever Adam Garner allowed the final four runs – all unearned – in the fifth, as the Leafs made three costly errors and allowed eight stolen bases in the five innings.
Jon Waltenbury had a double, a walk and scored twice for the Leafs, who managed seven hits.