Yorkton had a huge Western Major Baseball League comeback win Sunday in a rare afternoon contest hosting Regina at Jubilee Field.
Regina starter Justin Blue one hit the Cardinals through six scoreless innings, while Matt Bowles tried hard to keep pace as the Cardinal starter scattering seven hits, but giving up two earned runs through seven innings of work.
Yorkton finally broke through with a run in the eighth of Red Sox reliever Jacob Leyba.
Andre Del Bosque was in to close out the game for the Sox. Del Bosque, who had three saves to his credit, was striking out a batter per inning in the season, but the Cardinals had runners on the corners for pinch hitter Alnardo Rodriquez who took a pitch to the outfield fence to score the winning runs in the 3-2 decision.
Cardinal Assistant coach John McVey said the ninth inning comeback was huge as the Cardinals try to climb out of the East Division basement and into a playoff spot.
“It’s the time for us,” he said, adding the win was a complete team effort. “We used our entire roster. The winning run was a pitcher (Shaniel Rivera into pinch run).
“It speaks to the depth of our team.”
Rodriquez’s hit was of course the difference.
“It was a big spot right there, and he came through,” said McVey.
McVey said while the Cardinals have at times struggled to find wins they continued to battle, as they did against the Red Sox and their formidable pitching. The Cardinal coach said Blue pitched a great game, and in Del Bosque the Sox put one of the league’s best closers on the mound and the Cards still found a way to overcome it.
As for his own starter McVey said Bowles is tenacious and keeps his team in games.
“You can win any of the games he pitches,” offered McVey. “… He’s done a good job for us.”
The win left the Cardinals with a 12-22 record and .353 winning percentage tied seven games off the lead with Weyburn in the WMBL East Division.
Melville leads the east with Regina second 2.5 games back.
Yorkton hosted Saskatoon in a doubleheader, the first game scheduled, with the nightcap a make-up game for one rained out in Saskatoon earlier this season.
The Yellow Jackets struck early with a run in the first, but Yorkton took a 2-1 lead following a run in the fourth and fifth.
The home team could not hold the edge though as Saskatoon tied the contest with one in the sixth, then added two in the seventh for the win in the doubleheader-shortened contest.
Mike Meany clubbed his fourth home run of the season in the loss for the Cardinals.
Shaniel Rivera went 6.1 on the hill for Yorkton, scattering five hits and giving up the four runs, but only two of those were earned as Yorkton committed three errors.
In the second game Yorkton went up 1-0, gave up two runs in the third, then knotted the score with one in the fourth. It would stay deadlocked 2-2 through the regulation seven innings, and on into the ninth where George Santiago plated the winning run for the home side.
RJ Page started for Yorkton tossing seven innings of work, allowing seven hits and two earned runs while whiffing eight.
Kameron Mizzell earned the win in one inning of relieve.
Loss to Sox
Yorkton traveled to Regina last Wednesday (July 10), where the host Red Sox scored twice in the sixth and added three in the eighth on their way to a 5-1 lead, the Cardinals lone run coming in the ninth.
Yorkton was held to only two hits in the game as Regina starter Cory Carter tossed a one hitter through seven while striking out seven and walking only one.
Jeff Pool went 6.1 innings as the Cardinals starter, allowing four hits, and two runs, both earned. He struck out eight.
Kevin McLeod plated Yorkton’s only run and had a hit.
The Cardinals travel to Swift Current for action Thursday, then venture in Alberta for action in Medicine Hat Friday, and Saturday, before returning to Swift Current for action Sunday.
Monday they play in Weyburn, and next Tuesday head to Regina.