WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes (19-19) lost 9-4 to the Wichita Wingnuts at Shaw Park on Wednesday night.
Grant Heyman blasted a solo home run to right-centre with one out in the bottom of the second to give the Goldeyes a 1-0 lead.
The Wingnuts (25-13) went in front with six runs in the top of the fourth. Abel Nieves doubled to right with one out and scored the tying run when Tony Thomas doubled off the bottom of the wall in left. Fernando Perez followed with a two-run home run to left-centre. Later in the inning, Logan Trowbridge doubled down the right field line and came home with Wichita’s fourth run on a Leo Vargas two-out single through the left side. Rookie right fielder Hunter Clanin capped the inning with a solo home run to left-centre, the first of his professional career.
In the top of the fifth, Zach Nehrir led off with a home run to left. Nieves then singled to right-centre, and the Wingnuts opened a 9-1 lead two batters later when Perez lined a two-run homer to right.
Reggie Abercrombie doubled down the left field line leading off the sixth. After Eric Aguilera walked, Andrew Sohn drove in Abercrombie with a double to right-centre. Two batters later, Josh Mazzola lined a two-run single to right-centre. Mazzola has drive in 21 runs in his last 18 games.
Mitchell Lambson (1-1) took the loss, allowing six earned runs on nine hits over four innings. Lambson walked none and struck out four. Lambson was coming off two days of rest after pitching three and one-third innings of emergency relief on Sunday at St. Paul.
“Mitch did the best he could today,” said Goldeyes’ manager Rick Forney. “He battled really hard on short rest. Unfortunately they put nine runs up that we weren’t able to overcome. We need to get some better starting pitching and keep the game manageable over the first five or six innings of the ballgame, and hopefully support that pitcher with some good defence and runs.”
Wingnuts’ starter Charles Gillies (3-1) picked up the win, allowing four earned runs on nine hits in six innings. Gillies walked two and struck out two.
Brandon Bingel pitched three shutout innings of relief, and worked five and one-third scoreless in the three game series. Cameron McVey struck out the side in order in the top of the ninth.
The Goldeyes open a four-game series against the St. Paul Saints on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m. The Goldeyes’ starting pitcher is to be announced. St. Paul goes with right-hander John Straka (1-0, 3.60). Tickets for all Goldeyes’ home games are on sale now by visiting www.ticketmaster.ca/Goldeyes, or visiting any Ticketmaster location, including the box office at Shaw Park.