The Wichita Wingnuts shook things up with their pitching staff on Monday, bringing in three new pitchers, including starter Charlie Gillies. That proved to be quite a wise decision, as the Wichita starter tossed six shutout innings in the Wingnuts 6-1 victory over the Cleburne Railroaders. Wichita used a five run second inning to help lead them to victory.
After a scoreless first-inning, the Wichita Wingnuts would take a commanding lead in the second. With one down, Tony Thomas walked and moved to second on a wild pitch. John Nester then drew a walk before Logan Trowbridge was walked to load the bases. Patrick Young had lost the plate, and that came back to haunt him when he walked the next two batters as well, Hunter Clanin and Leo Vargas, driving in two runs.
Josh Hodges came in looking to stop the bleeding, but a single by Logan Watkins brought in two before Zach Nehrir walked to reload the bases. A wild pitch, the third of the inning, brought in Vargas with the fifth run. In all, Wichita drew seven walks in the frame.
Charlie Gillies (1-0) attacked Cleburne all game long. He allowed one hit through the first four innings, but found himself in a little trouble in the fifth. Cameron Monger and Alex Polston delivered back to back singles with one out. Gillies then got a fly out for the second out of the frame before Polston was thrown out trying to steal second to finish the inning.
The Wichita Wingnuts starter came out after 6-innings. He allowed 4-hits and 2-walks, while striking out 3.
In the top of the fifth, Wichita extended their lead. Nestor walked to start the inning and moved to second on a wild pitch. He reached third on an error and scored on a fielder’s choice by Clanin.
Cleburne got their only run in the seventh. Chevy Clarke was hit by a pitch to start the inning. He would score when Monger doubled into center two batters later. The Wingnuts bullpen would complete the final three innings of the game, allowing 2-hits and a run.
Walks became the nemesis for Cleburne in this game. They allowed 12 including three to John Nester. In fact, every batter in the Wingnuts but one walked at least one time. Wichita only recorded four hits in the contest, two by Watkins and two by Vargas.
The second game of this series is scheduled for tomorrow. Corbin Osburn (2-1, 5.40) looks to rebound after his last outing. He will be faced by Roman Gomez (0-2, 5.94). First pitch is at 7:06.
By Robert Pannier