HAMILTON – Kitchener scored five runs in the first inning on their way to an 18-9 victory over the Hamilton Thunderbirds in front of a season high 200 fans. The loss gives Hamilton a 5-20 record on the season while Kitchener goes to 13-11.
Luke Baker led off the game with a walk which was followed up by a Mike Andrulis single. Jeff Pietraszko then loaded the bases with a walk off of Thunderbirds starter Mike Gottschalk. Andrulis would score the first run of the game on a wild pitch. Mitch Delaney then cashed in two more as he doubled and advanced to third on Brian Burton’s single. Ben Tinklin would bring both runs in with a double to give Kitchener an early 5-0 lead.
The Panthers would add two runs in the second on Delaney’s single, two runs in the third on Tinklin’s two-run homerun and three more runs in the fourth with two of those runs coming off of Delaney’s two-run homerun for a 12-0 advantage after three and a half innings.
In the bottom of the fourth, Hamilton’s Matt McGraw would get on base with a single and moved to second on a wild pitch. McGraw then scored on Dan Jagdeo’s RBI single to take the donut off the scoreboard. However, Kitchener added another three runs in the top of the fifth.
Luke Baker would make his fifth appearance at the plate in the sixth inning, marking it with a double and scoring three batters later on Mat Taube’s single. The Thunderbirds would answer back in the bottom half of the inning as McGraw and Jagdeo each had one out singles before McGraw scored on Jonathan Solazzo’s RBI single. James Anderson then drew a walk to load the bases for Steven Hubbs who doubled to bring in two runs to make it a 16-4 game.
Kitchener would score their final two runs of the game in the seventh as Mike Winter walked and later scored on a wild pitch and Tinklin came in on Andrulis’s single. Hamilton would match those two runs in the bottom of the seventh.
In the bottom of the ninth Hamilton mounted a rally as Taylor Vanderlip, McGraw and Steve Martinow all walked to open the inning off of the Panthers’ reliever Phil Hinton. Hinton would allow Solazzo to draw a one out walk to score a run which was followed by a single by James Anderson that scored McGraw. Hubbs then drew the fifth walk of the inning to score the final run of the game before Graeme Carey flew out and Zach Elbirt struck out to end the game.
Mike Gottschalk started for the Thunderbirds going two innings allowing nine runs, all earned, on seven hits while walking three and striking out one in the loss. Matt Betts relieved Gottschalk going three innings allowing six earned runs on nine hits. Brett van Pelt then took to the mound for an inning and a third allowing two runs on two hits, walking one and striking out one. Colin Buckborough came in and pitched an inning and two-thirds allow a run on three hits, walking one and striking out two. Justin Volpato finished the game for Hamilton allowing two hits and striking out one.
For Kitchener, Mike McGillivray started the game going six innings, allowing four runs, on nine hits, walking two and striking out six batters. Joey Ellison would pitch the seventh inning allowing two runs on three hits while striking out one. Derek Sinko came in for the eighth inning allowing a single hit. Hinton would start the ninth for the Panthers allowing three runs on one hit, walking five and striking out one. Kevin Pigott pitched the final two batters of the game to secure the win.
The Thunderbirds will host the Ottawa Fat Cats on Saturday afternoon starting at noon in the Bernie Arbour Memorial Stadium. This is a make-up game from early May.
Winning Pitcher: Mike McGillivary (2-0)
Losing Pitcher: Mike Gottschalk (0-1)
Ben Tinklin – 5 for 6 (2 Singles, 2 Doubles, 2-Run Homerun, 2 Runs, 6 RBIs)
Mitch Delaney – 4 for 6 (2 Singles, Double, 2-Run Homerun, K, 3 Runs, 6 RBIs)
Mike Andrulis – 4 for 7 (3 Singles, Double, 2 Fielder’s Choices, 3 Runs, RBI)
Matt McGraw – 3 for 3 (3 Singles, 2 BB, 4 Runs, RBI)
Steven Hubbs – 3 for 4 (2 Singles, Double, Fielder’s Choice, BB, 3 RBIs)
Dan Jagdeo – 2 for 3 (2 Singles, Run, RBI)
Tickets for all Hamilton Thunderbirds home games are available at the Bernie Arbour Memorial Stadium Box Office on game day. For more information on Thunderbirds season tickets visit www.hamiltonthunderbirds.org.
* courtesy Mike Marasco, Hamilton Thunderbirds