Thursday: Springfield 3, Tulsa 1

John Brayfield's report on the Springfield Cardinals

The Springfield Cardinals continue their four-game home stand tonight as they face the Tulsa Drillers in game four at Hammons Field. The Cards will enter the game in fourth place in the Texas League East Division, 5.5 games behind the Arkansas Travelers. The Cardinals lost three of five games against Tulsa in their last match-up, a five-game series at Drillers Stadium, July 28--Aug 1. On the season, the Cards are 13-14 against Tulsa, 9-4 at home. Tonight's game will be the 28th and final meeting between the two clubs.

In Thursday night's game, Chris Lambert made his 16th start for Springfield, and won his first game, since losing two straight. Lambert is now 2-0 against Tulsa. Lambert gave up just one unearned run, allowing five hits in six innings of work. Lambert fell just one strikeout shy of tying his season-high, setting down eight Drillers on the night.

The Cards struck first in the third inning. With two outs, Shaun Boyd reached second base on a double then scored when Papo Bolivar, starting in right field, hit an RBI double, his 22nd of the year, off Tulsa starter Zack Parker (10-10), making it 1-0.

The Cardinals held the lead, behind strong pitching from Lambert, until the sixth inning. Cory Slavic, with one out, doubled down the right field line, and advanced from first to third on an errant throw from newly acquired right fielder, Ty Parker. With Salvik taking a short lead at third, Joe Koshansky hit a sacrifice fly to left field that allowed Slavik to tag-up and go home, tying the game at 1-1.

However, the tie didn't last long. In the bottom of the sixth, Travis Hanson led off the inning with a single, giving him a season-best 14-game hitting streak. Gabe Johnson followed with an attempt to bunt Hanson down to second. In what should have been an easy double play, Tulsa pitcher Zack Parker threw wide to second base pulling Doug Bernier off the bag, allowing both runners to arrive safely. After a Ty Parker sacrifice bunt that went 1-3, Brad Cresse got his second hit of the night, a two-run double to right-center field, driving Gabe Johnson and Travis Hanson home, giving the Cards a 3-1 advantage..,a score that would go with the Cards to the locker room at the end of the night.

Lambert received the win, And Cavazos, Josh Kinney and Cory Doyne combined to throw three scoreless innings, with Doyne getting his 16th save of the year.

Stuart Pomeranz (4-6) will take the mound tonight to face Tulsa's Texas League All-Star pitcher, Sandy Nin (9-5). Game time is 7:10 p.m. Gates open at 6:10 p.m. The game can be heard live on Springfield's KWTO JOCK 98.7 or online at www.springfieldcardinals.com. Tickets are available at the Hammons Field Ticket Office, by calling (417) 863-2143 or online at www.springfieldcardinals.com.

In Other News: Tyler Minges will have season-ending surgery in the coming days to repair the slap-tear in his throwing shoulder. Minges ends his season second in the Texas League with a .324 batting average. He is also second in doubles (34), slugging percentage (.564). and runs scored (95). He was the first in the Texas League with 59 extra-base hits. In the 83 games in which he recorded a hit--43 were multi-hit affairs.

You can write John Brayfield at johnb@positech.net.


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