T.J. Mittelstaedt Has Career Night as Wingnuts Down Salina 11-5
The Salina Stockade finally got to play a game in their home stadium Monday night, but it was T.J. Mittelstaedt who looked like he felt more at home in Dean Evans Stadium, setting a single-game high with 3-home runs, 6-RBI while scoring three runs, as the Wichita Wingnuts won 11-5. Both Mittelstaedt and Christian Stringer had 4-hits, and Tyler Kane won his American Association leading fifth game of the season.
Wichita took the lead in the bottom of the first inning. Stringer singled with one down, and scored when Brent Clevlen followed with a double. Mittelstaedt would then strike out, which was significant considering it was the only time he would get out in the game.
In the top of the second, Salina tied the score. Jesse Baker was the second batter of the inning and he clubbed his third home run of the season. That made the score 1-1.
The score would remain tied until the bottom of the third, when Mittelstaedt would put the Wingnuts on top for good. Stringer started out the inning with a base hit and, two batters later, Mittelstaedt drilled a 1-0 offering over the right-center field wall for his fourth home run of the season.
In the fourth, Wichita extended their lead to three. Richard Prigatano singled with one out and then stole second base. He moved to third on a base hit by Leo Vargas, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Harrison Kain. That made it 4-1.
The Stockade would get two of those runs back in the top of the fifth inning to make this a one run game. Jordan Caillouet led off by reaching on an error and scored when Cody Coffman drilled his second homerun of the season.
Clinging to a one run lead, Wichita would blow this game open in the bottom of the sixth inning. Prigatano led off the frame with a single and stole second before Vargas drew a walk. Both runners moved up on a double steal, and both scored on a base hit by Stringer two batters later. Clevlen then drew a walk to put two runners on, bringing Mittelstaedt back to the plate. As he had with his third inning home run, Mittelstaedt drilled a 1-0 offering for his second homerun of the game and fifth of the season. That made the score 9-3.
In the bottom of the eighth, Wichita would plate two more runs. Kain double to start the inning and moved to third on a base hit by Stringer. With runners at first and third no one out, Clevlen grounded into a double play, scoring Kain to make it 10-3. One more time, T.J. Mittelstaedt would come to the plate, this time drilling a 2-1 offering for his third home run of the game and sixth of the season. That made the score 11-3. For Mittelstaedt, he would have a solo, 2-run, and 3-run homer on the evening.
The Salina Stockade would put together one more rally trying to get back into this game in the top of the ninth. Caillouet singled with one down, and Coffman followed by hitting his second homerun of the game and third of the season to give Salina five-runs. However, they would get no closer, falling 11-5.
T.J. Mittelstaedt finished the game 4-5 with 3-runs, 3-homers, and 6-RBI. Christian Stringer was also 4-5 and scored 3-runs. He drove in 2. Tyler Kane (5-1) allowed 5-hits and 2-earned runs while fanning 4. The Salina Stockade were led by Cody Coffman, who was 2-4 with 2-runs and 4-RBI.
The second game of this four-game series is an early matinee affair. Alex Boshers (3-2, 5.94) starts for the Wichita Wingnuts. First pitch is scheduled for 11:05.
Featured Image by Ed Bailey
By Robert Pannier