Adam Bailey Leads Kansas City T-Bones Onslaught, Down Wichita Wingnuts
After starting the season 1-10, following a 10-game losing streak, the Kansas City T-Bones have their sizzle on, the very thing that the Wichita Wingnuts did not need right now. A 15-hit attack was headed by Adam Bailey, as the T-Bones battered Wingnuts starter Tim Brown in the 13-8 win.
One has to begin by tipping their caps to Kansas City. A night after beating Wingnuts ace Anthony Capra, the T-Bones battered Tim Brown, who entered the game undefeated and boasting a miniscule 1.54 ERA. It was apparent that none of these things would remain true very early on in this night.
The Kansas City T-Bones jumped out to a 6-0 lead, just three innings into the game. Robert Doran kept the Wingnuts off the scoreboard through the first three innings, allowing a single walk in each of the first three frames, but also striking out five.
While he was keeping Wichita off the scoreboard, the Kansas City batters were staking him to an early lead. In the top of the first Brown retired the first two hitters of the inning, but then gave up a double to Jake Blackwood. Bailey followed with an infield single, and Blackwood scored on an error to make it 1-0. Kyle Robinson followed with a double into the gap that brought Bailey all the way around from first to score. Robby Kuzdale then singled up the middle, driving Robinson home to make it 3-0.
The bottom of the second began with Joe Rapp at the plate. He fell behind 1-2 before working the count full, then blasted his third home run of the year to make it 4-0.
In the third Brown continued to struggle. Nate Tenbrink drew a walk to start the inning and scored on a double by Blackwood. Two batters later Robinson grounded a pitch back up the middle to score Blackwood and it was 6-0 Kansas City.
The Wichita Wingnuts got two of those runs back in top of the fourth. With one out, Joash Brodin hit his first home run of the year. Then came three straight hits off of the bats of TJ Mittelstaedt, John Nester and Dustin Geiger to load the bases. Luis Hernandez grounded to third, moving everyone up 90-feet and scoring Mittelstaedt. That would make the score 6-2.
The T-Bones got the runs right back, however. Vladamir Frias began the fourth with a double. Brown retired the next two batters, but could not get out of it cleanly. The Wichita starter threw three successive balls to Tenbrink. He then turned on a 3-0 pitch and drilled it over the wall to restore the six-run lead. That was Tenbrink’s second home run of the year.
In the fifth Wichita put another run on the board. David Espinosa singled with one out and after stealing second, moved to third on an error that allowed Matt Padgett to reach. Brodin walked to load the bases, and Mittlelstaedt drove Espinosa home with a ground out that made it 8-3.
Again the Kansas City T-Bones responded. Back-to-back singles put Bailey at second and Robinson at first. Two batters later Rapp lined a single into left field, scoring Bailey to restore the six-run advantage.
Doran (3-1) was replaced in the top of the sixth. The right-hander pitched 5 innings, allowed 5 hits, 5 walks and 3 runs, 2 of them earned. He also struck out 7. It wasn’t pretty, but he got outs when he needed them and, most importantly, he had the lead.
Derek Loera shut down Wichita in the top of the sixth inning, but Shawn Talkington would not have the same kind of success against Kansas City. Cavan and Tenbrink drew one-out walks and Blackwood loaded the bases on an error by the center fielder. That brought up Bailey, who drilled a grand slam for his first home run of the season. Bailey clearly proved that if you are going to go big for the first time, go real big.
Neither team was able to score in the seventh, but in the eighth the Wichita Wingnuts got one back. Dustin Geiger hit his sixth home run to begin the frame and bring the visitors within nine.
In the ninth the Wichita Wingnuts proved that there is no quit in this club. Josh Tols relieved for the T-Bones and gave up a lead-off walk to Padgett. Mittelstaedt walked two batters later and Brent Dean doubled to score both Padgett and Mittelstaedt. Geiger doubled to score Dean and two batters later Ray drove home Geiger. That made it 13-8, but that is as close as the Wingnuts would get.
The heart of the order was absolutely brutal for the Kansas City T-Bones. Blackwood, the club’s No. 3 hitter, went 2-5 with 3 runs and an RBI. Bailey was 4-5 with 3 runs and 4 RBI, and Robinson was 3-3 with a run and an RBI. Geiger was 3-5 with 3 runs and 2 RBI in a losing effort.
By Robert Pannier