Lingua Leads RailCats in Comeback Victory
by Ryan Zimmerman, Gary SouthShore RailCats
Oconomowoc, WI – The Gary SouthShore RailCats executed at a high level in every phase versus the Lake Country DockHounds as they snatched a 5-1 win that ensured their first series victory of the season.
Pitching, hitting, and defense all did their part to put Lake Country away in the late stages as the RailCats picked up their fourth consecutive win over the league’s newest franchise and their third straight at Wisconsin Brewing Company Park.
Following a pair of scoreless innings to open the contest, the DockHounds drew first blood in the bottom of the third. Though Michael Cruz erased a leadoff base hit when he caught Tristen Carranza stealing second base, Jake Snider doubled to place a runner in scoring position. A flyout moved him up 90 feet before T.J. Bennett singled him home to give Lake Country the early 1-0 edge.
While playing from behind, the RailCats defense showed out to keep their deficit at one run. Javeyan Williams uncorked a strike from center field to cut Daikan Yoh down as he tried to stretch a single into a double in the bottom of the fourth.
As the DockHounds threatened to extend their lead with two runners in scoring position in the fifth inning, Williams came to the rescue once again. He made a full-extension diving catch with two outs to eliminate the Lake Country threat and swing the momentum into the Gary SouthShore dugout.
In their next turn at-bat, the RailCats got to work against DockHounds pitching. Chris Burgess led off by crushing an opposite-field home run which tied the game before Williams walked and immediately stole second base. A Michael Woodworth base hit moved him up to third before Daniel Lingua’s sacrifice fly gave positioned Gary SouthShore ahead 2-1.
In the top of the eighth, Gary SouthShore hitters came through with two outs to provide a trio of vital insurance runs. A Williams double and Woodworth hit-by-pitch set the stage for Lingua to do damage. He roped a ground-rule double into the Lake Country bullpen down the right-field line to double the RailCats’ advantage.
Cruz then walked to load the bases, and Zach Racusin made the most of the opportunity. His two-run single capped off the scoring and planted the RailCats firmly in front 5-1.
That was all the bullpen needed to finish the DockHounds off. Zach LeBlanc, Steven Colon, and Carlos Vega teamed up to get the final 13 outs, allowing just two hits and two walks in their time on the mound. In just his second appearance as a RailCat, LeBlanc earned his first professional win.
The RailCats look to complete the sweep in the series finale tomorrow at 6:35 p.m. at Wisconsin Brewing Company Park as John Sheaks (1-1, 2.07 ERA) opposes Francisco Jimenez (3-0, 5.71 ERA). All the action takes place on aabaseball.tv, 95.9 WEFM, and the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network through the Mixlr app.