The Yorkton R. Miller’s Midget ‘AA’ Cardinals took to the road on Saturday to do battle with the struggling Regina Buffalos in Saskatchewan Premier Baseball League ‘AA’ action, after having much of their recently scheduled league games washed out due to rain.
Luckily for the Cardinals Mother Nature held off, allowing the Redbirds to crush the host Buffalos by scores of 19-2 in Game One and 8-0 in Game Two to move into a third place tie in the hotly contested SPBL ‘AA’ circuit, tied with Regina Angels at 17 points, one point up on the Lumsden Cubs and two back of second place Moose Mountain.
The Northeast Red Sox lead the league with a sparkling 13-1-0 record and 26 points.
Patience is a virtue
The Midget Cards proved that patience is indeed a virtue, frustrating the Buffalo pitchers with their collective keen eyes at the plate, working the Regina pitching staff for a season high 14 walks in the 19-2 mercy-rule shortened Game One.
Luke Walters and Mason Kelley led the Cardinals with three walks each while Caleb Bymak and Mitchell Kuzma each picked up two bases on balls.
Diminutive Cardinal Jake Holinaty led the Yorkton offence with a four single game going 4-for-4 with one walk while both Matt Wilgosh and Tyson Black went 2-for-4 with a single, double and walk each.
Black’s six RBIs led the Cardinals in that category while a trio of Redbirds, Wilgosh, Kelley and Dylan Bourget, all had two RBI performances.
Jordan Bieber, fresh off a lower body injury that put him on the shelf for several games, made a triumphant return to the mound in Game One.
Bieber improved his record to a league best 4-0 with a five inning complete game striking out nine Regina batters while allowing two runs on three walks and one hit.
Regina’s pitching was much more accurate in Game Two, however that did not help them as the powerful Yorkton offence, which currently leads the SPBL in runs scored, scored eight times on 13 hits, five of which were doubles, to win Game Two 8-0 and sweep the doubleheader in hostile territory.
Jake Holinaty picked up his first win of the season in his first start with a complete game shutout effort. Holinaty allowed just six Regina batters to reach base, three via the walk and three via hits.
Black was once against the offensive catalyst for the Midget Cardinals. The first year midget went 3-for-4 at the plate with a pair of doubles and three RBI in the win. Kelley (3-for-3, walk, RBI), Bymak (2-for-4, RBI) and Adam Neibrandt (2-for-3) also had extra base hits for Yorkton while Kuzma, Wilgosh and Bieber all added to their RBI totals with one each.
Edged by the Mavs
On Thursday the Yorkton R. Miller’s Midget Cardinals traveled to Moose Mountain to take on the Moose Mountain Mavericks in a game that was originally scheduled for June 15 but was postponed due to rain.
The second place Moose Mountain Mavericks continued their regular season dominance over Yorkton, downing the Cardinals 10-8, however there are positives from the loss. In each loss to the Mavericks, the Cardinals have gotten closer and closer to victory, cutting the margin of loss from seven (9-2), to five (11-6) and now two (10-8).
Tyson Black shouldered the loss for the Midget Cardinals. The loss, his second of the season, came in a game where he struggled with command at times. Black walked a season high four batters and hit one more in just over five innings of work. He also allowed six hits while surrendering seven runs, four earned.
But while Black struggled at times with his control, he was not the only one. The tight strike zone of the umpire caused problems for the Maverick pitchers as well, leading to 12 Cardinal walks, three by Caleb Bymak and two each by Black, Jordan Bieber and Jake Holinaty.
Bymak led the team offensively going 1-for-2 with a triple, an RBI and two runs scored in the loss while Holinaty also had a strong performance going 1-for-2 with two walks, a hit by pitch and two RBI.
The next action for the Yorkton R. Miller’s Midget ‘AA’ Cardinals (8-7-1) will be tonight when they host the basement dwelling White Butte Broncos (1-11-0). First pitch is set for 7:00pm.