LIVE: RailCats outwit the rain

2013-06-21T16:30:00Z 2013-06-21T23:07:08Z LIVE: RailCats outwit the rainBy Hillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com

GARY | The RailCats coaching staff had planned an undrafted seniors tryout day today that was ultimately delayed because of the rain.

The seniors are pounding in time before the RailCats take the field for their regularly scheduled 4:30 p.m. batting practice.

Greg Tagert has found a number of players that have ultimately made the roster from the undrafted seniors workout. Zac Mitchell and Chase Tucker, the starting infield, were players that were a part of last year's workout.

Hitters and pitchers are taking their shot for the roster with the tarp pulled back only halfway. The workout is not like the open tryout that the team holds at the beginning of the season. The coaching staff is looking for a particular skill set, so they limit players to pitching and hitting. They'll then take BP with the team to work on fielding skills.

This is also different because most of these players just ended their college seasons, so their pedigrees are known, unlike the open tryout where players who haven't played in several seasons can arrive to surprise the staff.

Tonight's lineup:

Saints (17-16)

2B Adam Frost

SS Joey Becker

3B Brad Boyer

LF Willie Cabrera

DH Brandon Tripp

CF Jose Hernandez

RF Jordan Tripp

C Dwight Childs

1B Dan Kaczrowski

RHP Luke Anderson (1-2, 7.00 ERA)


RailCats (17-15)

LF Adam Klein

CF MIke Massaro

RF Cristian Guerrero

C Craig Maddox

1B Steve Liddle

3B Brian Kolb

DH Drew Martinez

SS Zac Mitchell

2B Danny Pulfer

LHP James Adkins (0-0, 4.50 ERA)


The RailCats have six lefties in the lineup tonight to the Saints' two.

First inning

The Saints fall in order as Adam Frost and Joey Becker ground out to short and Brad Boyer flies out to left. Mid 1st inning: Saints 0, RailCats 0

Adam Klein flies out to center. Mike Massaro strikes out swinging. Cristian Guerrero fouls off a few before grounding out to second. End 1st inning: RailCats 0, Saints 0

Second inning

Willie Cabrera flies out to left. Brandon Tripp also flies out to left. Jose Hernandez singles to give the game its first baserunner. Jordan Tripp singles into left, the Saints have runners on first and second. Dwight Childs pops out foul to first. Mid 2nd inning: RailCats 0, Saints 0

Craig Maddox opens the inning with a single. Steve Liddle grounds out to first. On a wild pitch to Brian Kolb, Craig Maddox advances to third. Kolb flies out to right, too shallow to score Maddox from third. Drew Martinez is intentionally walked to get to Zac Mitchell, who responds with a single that scores Maddox. Danny Pulfer flies out to center. End 2nd inning: RailCats 1, Saints 0


Third inning

Adkins is replaced after two innings by Kyle Lindquist, no explanation, but likely an injury. The first two batters -- Dan Kaczrowski and Adam Frost -- single off of Lindquist. Joey Becker grounds into a double play, leaving Kaczrowski at third. Brad Boyer grounds to second, but a missed catch scores Kaczrowski on the error to tie the game. Willie Cabrera grounds into a fielder's choice that takes Boyer out at second. Mid 3rd inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Adam Klein has a sure hit robbed by Brad Boyer at third base and is thrown out at first. Mike Massaro sprints to first and thinks he's out-legged the throw from second, but the first-base ump disagrees. Cristian Guerrero singles into right. Craig Maddox singles into right-center to move Guerrero to third. Steve Liddle flies out to center. End 3rd inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Fourth inning

Brandon Tripp strikes out swinging. Jose Hernandez grounds out to third. Brian Kolb makes an MLB throw from third to take out Jordan Tripp. Mid 4th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Brian Kolb grounds out back to the mound. Drew Martinez and Zac Mitchell strike out. End 4th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Fifth inning

Dwight Childs grounds to second, covering first is pitcher Kyle Lindquist. Dan Kaczrowski flies out to right. Adam Frost strikes out swinging. Mid 5th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Danny Pulfer flies out to center. Adam Klein walks, but Klein is left on base as Massaro and Guerrero also fly out. End 5th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Sixth inning

New RailCats pitcher is Taylor Sewitt. Joey Becker singles on the first pitch he sees. Brad Boyer grounds into a 3-4-1 double play (second odd RailCats double play of the night. Willie Cabrera grounds out to second. Mid 6th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Craig Maddox grounds out to second and Steve Liddle and Brian Kolb each strike out swinging. End 6th inning: RailCats 1, Saints 1

Seventh inning

On the first pitch he sees, Brandon Tripp homers over the left-field wall. Jose Hernandez grounds out to second. Jordan Tripp grounds out to short and Dwight Childs strikes out swinging. 7th-inning stretch: Saints 2, RailCats 1

Drew Martinez strikes out swinging, Zac Mitchell grounds out to third and Danny Pulfer grounds out to second. End 7th inning: Saints 2, RailCats 1

Eighth inning

Dan Kaczrowski singles, Adam Frost lays down a sac bunt that is bobbled by the pitcher so Frost reaches with an error. The RailCats replace Sewitt with Marco Gonzalez. Adam Frost grounds to third, moving the runners into scoring position. Brad Boyer is intentionally walked. Willie Cabrera hits an infield fly, runners remain. Brandon Tripp doubles to score Kaczrowski and Frost unearned. Jose Hernandez strikes out looking. Mid 8th inning: Saints 4, RailCats 1

New Saints pitcher is Mikey Mehlich, a righty. Adam Klein strikes out looking and Mike Massaro flies out to right. Cristian Guerrero grounds out to third. End 8th inning: Saints 4, RailCats 1

Ninth inning

Jordan Tripp strikes out looking. Dwight Childs grounds out to second. Dan Kaczrowski singles with a bloop to right. Adam Frost grounds out to first. Mid 9th inning: Saints 4, RailCats 1

New Saints pitcher is Matt Meyer, a lefty. Craig Maddox pops out to short. Steve Liddle grounds out to second. Brian Kolb is walked and Drew Martinez is hit by a pitch. Ryan Babineau enters as a pinch hitter. Babineau is also hit by a pitch, Chase Tucker will run for him. An error (E1 throwing) scores three runs: Kolb, Martinez, Tucker. Pulfer is on third. Adam Klein flies out to left on a diving catch by Willie Cabrera. End 9th inning: RailCats 4, Saints 4

10th inning

Joey Becker singles, that'll be it for Marco Gonzalez. Clay Zavada, owner of three saves this season and a 3-1 record, enters for the RailCats. A wild pitch by Zavada moves Becker to second and an infield single by Brad Boyer (the RailCats watched waiting for it to roll foul down the first-base line) puts runners on the corners. Willie Cabrera lines out to third base and Kolb touches the bag for the unassisted double play. Brandon Tripp strikes out swinging. Mid 10th inning: RailCats 4, Saints 4

Bunt single puts Mike Massaro on base. A single past the shortstop by Cristian Guerrero puts runners on the corners. The ball changed direction on the dirt, so it's a single, not an error. Craig Maddox strikes out swinging. Steve Liddle pops out foul to third base. Brian Kolb singles, scoring Massaro. FINAL: RailCats 5, Saints 4


Brian Kolb was staring at a 3-2 pitch in the ninth inning. If Matt Meyer had struck out Kolb at 3-2 in the ninth, he never would have reached Kolb again in the 10th.



Brian Kolb: "All wins are good but that just kind of shows the character of our team, we battle and scratch it out any way we can, it's hard to put us away. When you have a team like that, that's the beautiful thing about baseball, you have to get the 27th out. You're right, you're one strike away or one pitch or one out, isn't not like you're one minute away, you still have to get that out and you know, it was a good win.

"I had a rough start to the game, but I'm always confident in myself and I used the first few at bats and I figured they'd come with a slider at the end of the game and I just looked at the pitches a few times. That also been a big thing talking to the older guys, not letting the first few at bats get to you. You can take some positive things from the not getting on base.

"At that point, understanding who you are and you're role, especially the majority of us outside of Cristian, the two catchers and Liddle, the majority of us we're not going to put one in the seats very often, so for us it's about getting the next guy on. We've had a few in the last week that we've just worn out some bullpens and there's that mentality that we don't have to do anything to win that we're not capable of doing, just get the next guy up."

Greg Tagert: "We'll take it.

"As much as we've benefited from some of the oddities of the game tonight, I still feel like, you know ... I'll never say we didn't deserve to win, but Brian Kolb draws that walk with two outs, we got ourselves in position, Chase Tucker moving his, you know, to score from first base on the overthrow and that was quite the inning and a half for Brian Kolb, who starts the rally with a walk, then in the 10th he makes the play of the game on the line-drive double play, then wins in in the 10th. You can't ask for better three different half innings than that as a baseball player. The credit goes to him.

"The pitching staff had to step up tonight, because we had the spot start for James Adkins, then he had to leave after two innings. ... He was a little tight maybe after pitching all three games in Fargo, he threw 30 pitches Tuesday in Wichita, and he got warm again Wednesday. We were hoping for that 4-5 innings, so we had two guys stretched and ready to crank it up, but unfortunately after that second inning the arm felt dead. Not pain, but nothing there. We already had him checked out and he's not injured. Kyle Lindquist was fantastic and Taylor Sewitt, both those guys, we give up the home run ball has become an Achilles heel with the bullpen and it's one of those things you can't really address, it's nothing more than pitches that are up in the zone. But overall Marco in those two innings, then Clay in the 10th. We got a little caught off guard with that ninth inning and mentally Marco is  done for the night. Usually you can feel the rally building, but with two outs. Usually you can feel it building so you've got your pitcher ready. But on that double header, Clay closed both games, we've been trying to get him a couple days off so we don't want to get him hot for no reason, not that we don't believe in the club."

Adam Klein: "They fell asleep on us in the ninth."

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Hillary Smith

Hillary Smith

Hillary Smith has covered prep, pro and college sports -- and even a Dixie Baseball World Series -- for newspapers north and south of the Mason-Dixon Line since 1995.



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