(July 11, 2016 – Carrollton, TX) “It’s that old adage, ‘walks almost always score,'” mentioned Spirits (45+) team manager, Kirk Siplia. “It’s the closest thing to a guarantee in baseball and Spirits pitching proved that Monday night. 5 of the 9 runs scored by the Reds were free passes given up by our pitching, but I’m sure it’s something we’ll get corrected.”
Sipila’s demeanor resembled that of several players who packed their bags and left with sighs under their breath as the Caddo Reds handed the squad their third loss of the season dropping the team’s record to 6-3; three full games behind the undefeated Dallas Orioles, a half game behind the Dallas Rangers, and in a tie for third less the tiebreaker with the Reds. The Reds finished out the game 9 to 7 as Lincoln Mikkelson finished off Spirits hitters in the final two innings to halt any rally opportunity.
“We had our chances with the sticks tonight,” continued Sipila. “We were moderately productive but still left 9 runners on base.”
The team produced 9 hits, however the major blow for the evening came in the 3rd inning where the Reds appeared to be on offense for an eternity. Bill Lee singled and then advanced to third when TK Hayes reached on a Spirits error. Fernandez then doubled scoring both runners and reached third on a wild pitch. Mikkelson struck out and Andy Postema drew a walk. Dan Sosa also walked and then Todd Murrah doubled scoring both of those runners.
Sipila came in to replace Spirits pitcher, Randy Brittain who struggled with his control and took most of the Reds hitters to 3, 4, and 5 pitch at-bats. Trudell then singled for the Reds sending Murrah to third, and Bret Baker walked following a strikeout by Roderick Hicks. Murrah was able to score when Spirits catcher, Tony Davis attempted to throw out Trudell who took second with two outs and the damage appeared done. More importantly, the amount of time the inning took cost the Spirits later as games are limited to two hours.
The Spirits offense was led by both Sipila and designated hitter, Patrick Bilgere each with two hits.
“I like the way we match up with the Reds moving forward,” noted Sipila. “We’ll put this one behind us and hit the reset button and prepare for the Cubs next Monday.”
The team visits the Cubs next Monday night at McInnish Park, Field #11. First pitch is 6:45PM.