By Murray Gleffe
GREEN BAY-The Battle Creek Bombers connected on 2 two-run homers to lift them to a 10-4 victory over the Green Bay Bullfrogs Tuesday evening (June 26) at Joannes Stadium.
The California collegiate trio of Cooper Morrison (UC Davis), Jake Munoz (San Francisco), and Adrian Damla (UC Irvine) led the way for the Bullfrogs with two hits apiece.
“Six of our hits, two RBI’s, and one run came from Cooper, Jake, and Adrian,” said Kirk Shrider, Bullfrogs Head Coach. “They all had a solid game.”
Walter Talcott was the winning pitcher for the Bombers giving up four runs in seven innings.
Jake Zatopek took the loss for the Bullfrogs.
The Bombers tallied a single run in the opening half inning when Caleb Henderson singled to send Sam Kippen home from second.
After a scoreless second inning, the frogs turned to their defense in the top of the third.
With one out, the Battle Creek’s Henderson hit a chopper to short, and the Bullfrogs turned a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
Morrison then led off with a center-field double, but the Bullfrogs were unable to capitalize as the next three batters couldn’t get on base.
In the top of the fourth, the Bombers increased their lead.
Pinch hitter Drake Osborn started with a lead-off single.
Then Zach Gartner uncorked his bat and sent a 370 foot plus shot over the left field wall to give the Bombers a 3-0 lead.
Having only one hit through the first three innings, the Bullfrogs knew they needed some offensive production if they were going to slowly crawl back into the contest.
And that is exactly what happened.
Maris hit a shot to right field.
Then Damla drove him in with a triple in which Michael Brown (the Bombers right fielder) played too shallow.
The ball subsequently got past him as he attempted to make a dive at the ball and the result was an RBI and first run for the Bullfrogs.
They didn’t stop there.
Riley Mihalik stepped to the plate and sent a rocket past the second base bag to allow Damla to score.
Suddenly, just like that, the Bullfrogs were within 3-2 after four innings.
“I felt confident going into the back half of the game being down only one run,” said Shrider. “I felt like we had the momentum back on our side.”
The Bombers then ended any hopes the Bullfrogs had by cranking their game up to another level.
In the top of the fifth, a single and two walks loaded the bases.
Osborn then collected two RBI’s himself after singling up the gap.
Gartner added another base hit and two more runs came across the plate.
All of a sudden, a one run game had turned into a 6-2 lead for Battle Creek.
A wild pitch sent in another run, and the Bombers then, for all intent purposes put the game away when Will Baker took a low inside pitch and ripped a shot down the left foul territory line.
At the last minute, the ball held its line and hit the inside pole.
The umpire gave the signal (home run), and the Bombers took a 9-2 lead through the top half of five.
“We didn’t throw good pitches in those two back to back innings,” said Shrider. “You can’t give up eight runs just like that. It’s tough when you see it unfolding but I’m not out on the field playing the game.”
In the bottom of the fifth, the Bullfrogs Ibarra scored off a Damla hit to bring them back to 9-3.
The Bullfrogs used three normal infielders to pitch the final four innings in which four hits were only given up.
“We went with a different group of middle relievers tonight who normally don’t pitch a lot in game situations,” said Shrider. “I thought those guys did a tremendous job for us.”
Each team would add one additional run down the stretch.
The Bullfrogs fall to 10-18 on the season and will be back in action tomorrow when they play a rare doubleheader in which they travel to take on Fond Du Lac in the morning game, and then host a night game back in Green Bay.
Battle Creek 1,0,0 2,6,0 1,0,0 10
Green Bay 0,0,0 2,1,0 1,0,0 4