Springfield's Lead Down to One

The Tulsa Drillers pulled to within a game of Springfield in the North Division, picking up an extra-inning win over the Cardinals on Sunday afternoon, by a final of 4-3 in ten innings. Darin Holcomb had the game-winning hit, as his RBI double in the top of the tenth inning put Tulsa in front to stay at 4-3.

Immediately after Holcomb's go-ahead hit, heavy rains came and forced a delay of an hour and 21 minutes at Hammons Field.

Tulsa got on the board in the second, as Ryan Harvey took Cards' starter Trey Hearne out to left-center field for his team-leading seventh homer, giving the Drillers a 1-0 lead.

Springfield got the equalizer in the bottom of the inning, as Hearne was hit by a Chacin pitch with the bases loaded, forcing home Tyler Henley to tie the game at 1-1.

Cole Garner didn't allow the tie to last long, as he cranked one over the left field wall in the top of the third inning, giving the Drillers the lead for good at 2-1.

Tulsa added an important run in the eighth, as Mike McKenry's bloop single over shortstop Pete Kozma plated Harvey from second base, making it 3-1.

The Cards answered with a run in the bottom of the inning, as Henley tripled and scored on Kozma's RBI ground out, pulling Springfield to within a run at 3-2.

Springfield got even in the ninth, as they loaded the bases with no outs against Tulsa closer and eventual winner Andrew Johnston (1-2). Johnston struck out Steven Hill for the first out, but allowed Cards' first baseman Matt Arburr to tie the game with a sac fly. Johnston forced extras by getting Kozma to fly out to end the inning.

The Drillers grabbed the lead in the tenth, taking advantage of two walks by Francisco Samuel (3-2). With runners at first and third and one out, the Redbirds went to the bullpen, summoning new reliever Eduardo Sanchez into the game. Sanchez gave up a run-scoring double to Holcomb, giving the Drillers a 4-3 lead. The game was then stopped for an hour and 21 minutes before it finally resumed.

Tommy Baumgardner came out of the bullpen in the bottom of the inning, retiring the first two hitters he faced. Daryl Jones reached with a two-out single though, bringing the winning run to the plate. Tony Cruz hit Baumgardner's first pitch on the screws, but lined out to the warning track in left-center field to end the game, giving Baumgardner his second save of the year.

The Redbirds (24-18) and Drillers (23-19) will finish up the home stand at 12:10pm, in a special Memorial Day start time at Hammons Field. Springfield will send Ryan Kulik (0-2) to the mound, as he takes on Tulsa right-hander Samuel Deduno (5-1).

The Cards will hit the road for six straight games, beginning on Wednesday, May 27th. They won't return to Hammons Field until Wednesday, June 3rd, when they open a six-game home stand. Tickets are available for Monday's home stand finale and for the upcoming home stand, by calling (417) 863-2143 or online at springfieldcardinals.com.

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