Alex Boshers Goes the Distance in Blanking Salina, Wingnuts Win 6-0
The sign of a truly brilliant pitcher is when he is able to rebound off of a tough outing and provide one of his best performances of the season in the next. Five days ago, Wichita Wingnuts ace Alex Boshers found himself struggling against the Texas AirHogs, giving up 5-runs in 5-innings pitched. It was his worst outing since being moved into the starting rotation but, on Monday night, the Wingnuts saw their ace rebound, blanking the Salina Stockade, 6-0.
The Wingnuts took a commanding lead early on by plating five runs through the first three innings of the ballgame. In the bottom of the first, Harrison Kain singled to start the frame and moved to second, two batters later, on a ground out. Following a walk to T.J. Mittelstaedt, Matt Chavez grounded a base hit into center field that scored Kain and Wichita was quickly ahead, 1-0.
In the bottom of the second, the home team extended their lead. Martin Medina got the frame going with a double, and scored when Richard Prigatano lined a double of his own into center field. Prigatano stole third base and scored on a sacrifice fly by Leo Vargas to extend the lead to three.
In the bottom of the third, the Wingnuts added two more runs to their lead. The first two batters of the inning reached when Chavez singled and Brennen Salgado followed with a walk. A flyball allowed Chavez to move the third, and he scored on a sacrifice fly by Prigatano. Vargas then stepped to the plate, and lined a double into left field that brought Salgado home to make it 5-0.
That was plenty enough run support for Alex Boshers on this night. The right-hander seemed to get stronger as the game went along, allowing Salina very little opportunity to score in this contest.
Their best opportunity actually occurred in the first inning. The Wingnuts’ starter retired the first two batters of the inning, but Daniel Aldrich kept the inning alive with a base hit the opposite way into left field. Jordan Caillouet singled into right field, and Jesse Baker followed with a base hit up the middle. Aldrich rounded third looking to score and give his team to lead, but Kain’s throw of the plate was dead on to nail the runner and keep the Stockade off the board.
In the top of the third, Salina would look to get on the board again. A triple by Logan Trowbridge started the frame, and Boshers would walk Jimmy Heck two batters later. That set up for what became Boshers’ best friend all night long – the double-play. Aldrich grounded to second base, starting a double-play, the second of the game to that point. The Wingnuts would turn three on the evening.
Following a single in the fourth inning, Alex Boshers retired 13 of the next 14 hitters he faced. He came out for the ninth, retired the first two hitters before hitting Caillouet with a pitch. Baker then grounded into a fielder’s choice that put runners on first and second, but Boshers was able to get Brad Cuyos to ground out to end the ballgame.
It was an outstanding performance by Alex Boshers. He pitched all 9-innings, giving him his third complete game victory as a Wingnuts pitcher. He allowed 6-hits and a walk in the contest. It was also the first shutout of his professional career. The complete-game performance now ties him for the second most in Wichita Wingnuts history.
The Wichita offense would add one more run in the bottom of the eighth inning. Medina started the frame by drawing a walk before Prigatano was hit by a pitch. A double-play allowed Medina to reach third, and he scored on a double by Kain. That made the final of 6-0.
The Wichita offense was led by Richard Prigatano, who finished 1-2 with a run scored and 2-RBI. Karrison Kain was 2-4 with a run and an RBI as was Matt Chavez. Jesse Baker had 2-hits for the Salina Stockade.
Game 2 of this four-game set is tomorrow night at 7:05. Wichita will send right-hander Ryan Kussmaul (0-2, 4.50) to the hill. Salina has not name their starter yet.
By Robert Pannier