Archive for Friday, July 8, 2005

Reds swept by Blue Sox

July 8, 2005

— The Lansing Reds battled tough for two games Thursday night but came home empty-handed against the Leavenworth Blue Sox at Sportsfield.

The Reds (1-13) fell behind 3-0 in the bottom of the first inning in game one, but for a while they didn't appear to be rattled by the early deficit. All three runs were the result of three first-inning hits off Reds pitcher Tyler McNeil, but the defense played clean baseball.

Lansing threatened to rally in the top of the second when Logan Ryan reached base on a hard-hit grounder. He stole second and advanced to third on Chase Horseman's ground ball. Ryan was unable to score, however. The Reds retired the Blue Sox in order in the bottom of the second.

A single by McNeil was all the offense that the Reds could muster in the top of the third, and then things began to slip away. The Blue Sox had three hits and took advantage of three Lansing errors in the bottom of the third. That led to five runs and an 8-0 deficit. They plated two more runs off of three hits in the fourth before the game was called because of the run-rule spread.

Although the Reds didn't score in game one, they made solid contact at the plate and were picky with pitches. They had only two strikeouts and forced Leavenworth's defense to make plays.

The Reds fell behind early again in game two as they gave up two first-inning runs. After that, starting pitcher Kris Hernandez settled down and shut the Blue Sox down for the next two innings.

Leavenworth loaded the bases with two outs in the fourth. It appeared Hernandez would get out of the jam, but an error led to six more runs scoring. Suddenly Lansing trailed 8-0.

"Kris threw well, but the one inning where he should have got out of it he started getting tired and his pitches were up," Reds manager Michael Smith said. "He was throwing well and should have been out of it, but we had that error."

The Reds weren't finished, though.

They scored twice in the fifth and then plated two more runs in sixth.

"Dylan Delich dropped one in, and Chase Horseman had a hit with the bases loaded that drove in a couple of runs," Smith said.

The rally wasn't enough to overcome the early deficit, however The Blue Sox plated three more runs and hung on for the 11-4 victory.

Smith praised the efforts by Hernandez and Horseman on the mound in game two. Hernandez threw the first four innings before Horseman added two strong innings of relief.

The Reds next play at 6 p.m. Sunday against the Easton Outlaws at Sportsfield.

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