Bums Drop Game Two 8-3
TRAVERSE CITY, MI— The Traverse City Beach Bums got six strong innings from Rick Raraigh but were unable to recover from a Normal Cornbelters' 5 run first inning, falling in the second game of the three-game series Wednesday night at Wuerfel Park. Raraigh pictured here in a Pete Walters photograph, with Cornbelter Andrew Barbaro in the background.
The Beach Bums got behind early when starting pitcher Matt Smith allowed five runs in a first inning highlighted by a two-run single by Normal designated hitter A.J. Miller to give the Cornbelters a 5-0 lead. Traverse City worked their way back into the ballgame with a run in the third inning, and two in the seventh on an RBI-double from second baseman Hector Bernal to cut the Normal lead to 5-3.
The Cornbelters offense was led by third baseman Frank Martinez who went 5-for-5 at the plate.
In the ninth, Martinez, came to the plate with runners on first and second base against Beach Bums reliever Scott Reid and capped off his perfect night at the plate with his tenth home run of the season to open up an 8-3 lead and end the scoring in the ballgame.
Normal starting pitcher Bobby Pritchett (6-3) pitched six innings for the Cornbelters in earning his sixth win of the season. Smith (1-5) pitched just a third of an inning allowing five runs in suffering his fifth loss of the season. Beach Bums reliever Rick Raraigh was impressive in 6.2 scoreless innings on the mound while striking out six. Cornbelters reliever Mitchell Schuler pitched 1.1 innings to record his sixth save in 2011.
With the loss, the Beach Bums fall to 35-33, while Normal improves to 33-35 on the season. Beach Bums center fielder Zack Pace had three hits at the plate to lead the Traverse City offense, while Jeff Flagg and Hector Bernal each had two hits for the Beach Bums in the ballgame.
In other Frontier League action, the Windy City ThunderBolts fell to the West Division leaders, the River City Rascals 12-7. The win was the 50th of the season for the Rascals. East Division leaders, the Joliet Slammers, picked up another win dropping the Gateway Grizzlies 9-2. The Slammers win puts them 4.5 games up on the Beach Bums and the ThunderBolts who remain tied for second in the East.
The Beach Bums-Cornbelters series concludes with the final game of this three-game set on Thirsty Thursday sponsored by the Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association at 7:05 p.m. Come out and enjoy great drink discounts, with one dollar off all fountain drinks and a dollar off beer throughout the evening! Left hander David Deminsky gets the start for the Beach Bums and will be opposed by righty Brett Lester for the Cornbelters.
If you can't make it to Wuerfel Park to join the fun in person -- or if you are in attendance bring your radio and catch the Budweiser Pregame Show starting at 6:45 p.m. on Sunny Country 101.9 FM and streaming online through tcbeachbums.com.