Canaries Hang On for 9-7 Victory over Joplin
Photo Courtesy: Ryan Alexander Photography
Shawn Blackwell picked up his third win of the season and the offense put up nine runs on 12 hits as the Birds beat the Blaster 9-7 on Friday night at Joe Becker Stadium in Joplin.
Blackwell pitched well on Friday, scattering 12 hits over six full innings and giving up four runs, all earned. He also picked up three strikeouts in the outing. He did manage to keep the ball in the yard on a very warm night, though, inducing several groundouts throughout the night.
The Birds have adjusted their offensive mindset over the last few weeks and showed again on Friday their ability to manufacture runs. Blake Schmit led off the game with a double, then Schmit advanced to third on an Ozney Guillen groundout to the right side. Jake Taylor picked up a RBI with a groundout to the shortstop, allowing Schmit to score from third.
Joplin tied the game at one in the bottom of the second. Geraldo Valentin got on with a one-out single, then advanced to second on a wild pitch. He then scored on a Juan Medina two-out single to tie the game at one.
The Canaries broke the game open in the fifth. Michael Pair led off the inning with a no-doubter homer, pushing the Birds’ lead to 2-1. Aaron Owen singled with no one out, then Ethan Chapman followed up with a two-run blast to right to bring the score to 4-1.
The Blasters wouldn’t go down without a fight, though. They began their comeback attempt in the bottom of the fifth. Mitch Glasser led off the inning with a single then advanced to third on an Oscar Mesa single. Charlie Valerio scored Glasser with a RBI single to cut the lead to 4-2. Willie Cabrera scored Valerio with a sacrifice fly to center to bring the score to 4-3.
The Canaries rebuilt their lead in the sixth. After loading the bases with two walks and a single, Blake Schmit drove in Ryan Lashley with a single. Owen would score on an Ozney Guillen sacrifice fly, to rebuild the lead to 6-3.
The battle would continue into the bottom of the sixth, as again the Blasters would answer. Jesus Solorzano got on with a one-out single then stole second. Ronnie Richardson drove in Solorzano with a RBI single, cutting the lead to 6-4.
The Birds would never lose the lead for the remainder of the night scoring one run in both the seventh and eighth innings, even though things got a little dicey in the bottom of the eighth inning. With James Jones on the hill, the Blasters would push three runs across the plate to cut the lead to one at 8-7.
Ozney Guillen placed a bloop single into no-man’s-land with two outs to score Owen from second. Madison Boer capped off the night by striking out the side to end the game and picking up his first save in a Canaries uniform.
Joe Bircher (0-3, 2.61 ERA) will be on the mound on Saturday for the Birds as they continue their week-long road trip. The Birds’ return home on Friday, June 25th for a two-game series against the Laredo Lemurs. Contact the Canaries ticket office for information regarding single game or season ticket options by calling 605-336-6060 or visit the website at www.sfcanaries.com for more information.