Slammers 13 Bolts 5
CRESTWOOD, IL – A seven-run fifth inning proved to be too much for the ThunderBolts to overcome, as Windy City fell to the Joliet Slammers 13-5 in game one of a two game series at Standard Bank Stadium Friday night.
Jake Welch battled through the first four innings, allowing a baserunner to reach scoring position in three of them. Welch, though, allowed just one run to score before the Slammers sent 11 men to the plate in the fifth.
The Windy City (37-52) starter tried to keep his team in the ballgame trailing 2-0, but Justin Garcia smacked a decisive grand slam to put the Slammers up for good. Joliet (50-38) managed another run in the inning to go up 8-0.
The ThunderBolts showed life in the bottom half. Following a Derek Bangert single and Larry Balkwill hit-by-pitch, the bases would eventually become loaded for Joe Becht, who walked home the Bolts’ first run.
Omar Obregon followed with a chopper back up the middle that scored Blair Beck and Terrance Robertson to make it 8-3.
The Slammers, though, put up another crooked number for good measure in the eighth. They batted around for the second time in the contest and added five runs to their lead on five hits.
With the score 13-3 in the bottom of the ninth, Bangert launched a towering two-run shot to straightaway centerfield for his second home run of the season.
The ThunderBolts struck out a season-high 16 times as a team, with Joliet’s Nate Antone recording six of his seven outs via the strikeout. Welch (6-6) took the loss in 4.1 innings, while Antone (1-1) earned the win in 2.1 out of the bullpen.
The ThunderBolts send Braulio Torres-Perez (2-5, 3.97) to the bump against Joliet’s Taylor Goshen (4-5, 4.67) Saturday.
It will be the final home game of the 2018 season at Standard Bank Stadium. Fans in attendance will enjoy a “Super Mega” firework spectacular following the contest, presented by Lumina Pyrotechnics. First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 and those not at the park may listen to the broadcast live on 88.3 FM or wxav.com.