The Chicago Dogs have been relishing their role of being the spoiler over the last few weeks, and the Wichita Wingnuts were the unfortunate recipients on Friday night. The Dogs rallied for four unanswered runs to down Wichita 5-2. Stephen Perez knocked in two to help lead the way and the Chicago bullpen tossed 5.1-innings of scoreless relief.
After a scoreless first inning, both teams would get on the board in the second. With one down, Tony Rosselli grounded a ball to short that he beat out for a single. Stephen Perez followed with a triple to the wall in right to put the Chicago Dogs up 1-0. The Dogs had the chance to extend their lead, but Wichita starter Seth Harvey struck out Matt Dean before getting Michael Falsetti to fly out.
In the bottom of the inning, Angel Reyes led off with his 16th homer of the year to knot the score at one.
It would stay that way until the fourth, when the Wichita Wingnuts would take the lead. Reyes walked to start the inning and then stole second. Scott Barnes retired the next two batters and looked like he would get out of the inning all together when John Nester struck out, but the ball got away from the catcher, allowing Nester to reach first and Reyes to score. That made it 2-1.
Seth Harvey was brilliant through six innings. The right-hander allowed just one run on 4-hits. He walked 2 and struck out 5.
Felix Carvallo came on in the seventh, and the Dogs would tie the score right off. With two down, Matt Dean doubled and he scored on a single by Falsetti.
In the eighth, the Chicago Dogs would retake the lead. Edwin Arroyo and Rubi Silva delivered back-to-back singles to start the inning. A passed ball moved both runners into scoring position before Trey Vavra was walked. A sacrifice fly by Dalton Blasser brought home Arroyo and Silva scored on a two-out hit by Perez to make it 4-2.
In the ninth, Chicago added an insurance run. Falsetti doubled to start the inning and it looked like he would stay there, but a two-out hit by Silva brought him home to extend the lead to five.
After scoring their run in the fourth, the Wingnuts could generate no offense. They would get only three hits over the last five innings of the contest, as Rich Mascheri (2-0) earned the victory with 2 shutout innings. Kaohi Downing retired the side in the ninth for his 13th save of the season.
Stephen Perez was 2-3 with 2-RBI. Rubi Silva was 3-5 with a run and an RBI. John Nester was 3-4 for Wichita.
These two teams will face each other again Saturday in the second game of this series. First pitch is 7:05.
By Robert Pannier