Canaries Can't Tame Wingnut Bats in Wichita
By Aaron Rosenberg
WICHITA, KS - Wichita's power bats came as good as advertised Monday night, exploding for 14 runs on 16 hits, including four homeruns. Despite a good start for the Canaries offensively, they couldn't keep up with Wichita's pace and the Birds dropped the series opener 14-4. The Wingnuts set an American Association record by turning six doubleplays in the contest.
The Canaries jumped on Wingnuts starter Tim Brown in the 1st, with AJ Kirby-Jones, Chris Duffy and Chris Valencia each driving in a run and building a 3-0 lead. After Wichita answered back with two runs in the bottom half of the inning, the Canaries responded in the 2nd as Steve Tinoco doubled in Kevin Dultz to put the Canaries in front 4-2. That would be the only scoring for the Birds on the night after Brown settled in and improved to 7-2 by logging six innings of work. The tall righthander allowed four runs on nine hits and struck and walked one batter each.
Wichita scored early and often, hitting five homeruns en route to the easy win. The Wingnuts scored two in the 1st, five in the 2nd and 3 in the 3rd and the outcome was never in doubt. Trevor Whyte homered twice (4), and Ryan Khoury (7), Brent Clevlen (5) and Cody Robinson (1) each added blasts of their own. Matt Wickswat fell to 2-3 with the loss and was tagged for 11 runs, 10 of them earned, in five innings while allowing 12 hits, striking out two and walking four. Chase Boruff was roughed up for three runs in the 6th, but Josh Giles threw a scoreless 7th in his second game back from a hamstring injury and Alan DeRatt kept the Wingnuts off the board in the 8th.
Chris Valencia had three hits in defeat for the Canaries, while Brandon Jones and Sam Lind had two apiece. With the loss, the Birds drop to 20-31 and now sit 8 games behind Laredo in the wildcard race. Wichita improves to 34-17 and leads Laredo by 6 games in the South division.
Kyle Ruwe (4-4) will take the hill Tuesday night for the Birds and has been their best pitcher over the last three weeks. The righthander has won his last three decisions and turned in four impressive outings in a row. Quieting the hot Wingnuts bats will not be an easy task, but Ruwe may be their best shot at doing so.
First pitch will be at 7:05 PM and the pregame show will begin at 6:45 on AM 1230 and FM 98.1 KWSN.