Canaries Let One Get Away in Amarillo
By Aaron Rosenberg
For six innings, it looked like all the Canaries (26-49) need to get back on track in Amarillo was a good meal and a full night's sleep. Inevitably, it seemed, late-inning drama set in and Amarillo (23-49) went on to score the game's final eight runs to steal a 10-9 win.
The bats for the Canaries seemed unstoppable through the first six frames, scoring nine runs and putting 18 men on base. AJ Kirby-Jones and Chris Duffy hit back-to-back homeruns in the 3rd inning and a five-run 6th capped the scoring with the Canaries holding a 9-2 lead. Steve Tinoco and Duffy each had three hits, while Kirby-Jones, Chris Valencia and Stephen Branca had two hits apiece. The Birds scored once in the 2nd inning, twice in the 3rd and added one more in the 4th before exploding for five runs in the 6th.
Ben Moore was strong early on the mound for the Canaries, allowing just two runs through the first five innings. As usual, Moore's command was strong as he finished with six strikeouts and only issued one walk. He ran into trouble in the 6th, allowing two runs but the Canaries still held a comfortable 9-4 lead. The 7th inning proved to be more costly as Moore was sent back out, but after four straight singles started the inning with two Amarillo runs and two men remaining on base, Josh Giles was summoned from the bullpen. Giles was not effective, allowing a hit and issuing a walk. Amarillo trimmed the lead to 9-8 before Joe Testa came in to induce an inning-ending doubleplay.
Testa was the hero in the 7th, but surrendered a homerun to Kyle Nichols to start the 8th that tied the game. The lefty was able to finish the inning without further damage, but it set up Amarillo for a walk-off win in the 9th. Alan DeRatt pitched the 9th and was unable to record an out with the inning culminating on Andres Rodriguez's single into center to score Geraldo Valentin.
Bellows finished his day with four hits, including the homerun, for Amarillo and Joe Weik, Rodriguez, Johnny Bladel and Valentin each drove in two runs. The Sox hitters had 20 hits in the game.
Derek Blacksher (2-8) earned the win by recording the final out in the top of the 9th. DeRatt suffered the loss and fell to 2-5.
The series continues Tuesday night with first pitch at 7:05 PM and pregame coverage getting underway at 6:45 on AM 1230 and FM 98.1 KWSN.