(June 26, 2019 – Euless, TX) The ghosts weren’t in a giving mood Wednesday night and that attitude found its way to the box score as the team used a 13-hit attack to spoil an evening of baseball for the Brewers, cruising to an 11 to 1 mercy rule victory on Legends Field at Texas Star Complex.
The win gives the Spirits (40+) a certainty for the top 6 in DFW ABA League play and despite the outcome of he final two games of the regular season, thus qualifying them for the league’s playoff bracket. Eric McPherson, Travis Hitzeman and Shawn Lee were perfect on the night from the dish, with McPherson and Lee each finishing 2-for-2 with a free pass to first and Hitzeman finishing with 3 hits in 3 attempts, alongside a run scored and a pair of RBIs. Patrick Bilgere also finished with a pair of hits including a double along with a pair of runs batted in to round off the box score.
Bobby Kornhauser was the story defensively. The hard-throwing left handed pitcher went the distance, pitching 5 innings while allowing an earned run off of just 2 hits while walking 4 and striking out 4.
“Despite being held to a very tight zone in my opinion, Bobby was lights-out for us tonight,” commented manager, Kirk Sipila following the game. “The guys put together a very solid effort tonight offensively and it was nice to watch Bobby get it done. This win was good for us.”
The Spirits started quickly in the first inning, but appeared they may be the same team of recent that has left scores of runners stranded on the base paths. McPherson led off the game with a single and later stole second before Stacy Scott grounded out. Sipila also grounded out, but McPherson alertly took home after the Brewers third baseman relayed the throw to first to give the Spirits a 1 to 0 lead. Hitzeman then singled and Lee drew a base-on-balls. Bilgere singled to load the bases, but David Tipton grounded out to the pitcher to leave three left on and to end the great start.
Kornhauser made easy work of the Brewers, despite a single by Joe Cano and the lead remained 1 to 0 until the top half of the third inning. Earl German drew a one-out walk to start things off and McPherson and Scott followed suit with free passes. Sipila was called out on an infield fly, but a double by Hitzeman allowed both German and McPherson to score to give the ghouls a 3 to 0 lead.
The Brewers went in order in the bottom half of the inning and the Spirits offense picked up where it had left off to start the fourth as Lee hit a single up the middle and stole second on the next pitch. Bilgere flew out, but Tipton followed with a triple to the left-center field wall that scored Lee and the Spirits led 4 to 0. John Hefner grounded out and that allowed Tipton to score and after three and a half in, the Spirits were up 5 to 0.
The Brewers were able to get their lead off hitter aboard in the bottom half of the fourth with a base-on-balls and a fielder’s choice allowed the next hitter to trade places. The Brewers base runner then stole second and he later advanced to third when the Spirits dropped a pick-off attempt from Korhauser at second. A single by Larry Paulino allowed the Brewers to score their only run of the game, cutting the Spirits lead to, 5 to 1.
The Spirits then opened things up in the fifth inning after Kornhauser reached on a one-out single and advanced to third on a double by German. Korhauser was able to score on a wild pitch and a follow up triple by McPherson made it, 7 to 1 Spirits. Scott drew another walk to first and a tricky play when he took off for second base cost McPherson his life on the base paths as the shortstop for the Brewers intercepted the throw from the catcher and they easily relayed to get McPherson at the plate. A single by Sipila scored Scott and a single by Hitzeman pushed Sipila to third before Lee hit an RBI single to score Sipila. A double by Bilgere send Hitzeman and Lee home before Tipton flew out to end the inning.
Kornhauser again made quick work of the Brewers in the bottom half of the inning and the game was ended due to the league’s 10-run mercy rule. The win evens the team’s record to 7-7 in regular season play with just two regular season games remaining on the schedule. The Spirits return to action next Wednesday night as they play host to the LS Spurs at Oak Grove Park, Field H at 9:00PM. Click here for schedule details.