Bowling Green, Kentucky– Grant Witherspoon homered and had four RBIs, but the Bowling Green Bootleggers (6-3) dropped the third game of a six-game series to the Asheville Tourists (4-4) 6-5 on Thursday at Bowling Green Ballpark. The two teams will play the fourth game of the series on Friday with
Bowling Green, Kentucky– Grant Witherspoon homered and had four RBIs, but the Bowling Green Bootleggers (6-3) dropped the third game of a six-game series to the Asheville Tourists (4-4) 6-5 on Thursday at Bowling Green Ballpark. The two teams will play the fourth game of the series on Friday with a 6:35 PM CT first pitch.
Bootlegger’s starter Jayden Murray and Tourists starter Jimmy Endersby entered into a pitcher’s duel in the third game of the series on Thursday but the Hot Rods broke through in the third. In his first game with Bowling Green, Luis Trevino walked and with two outs Witherspoon hit a two-run homer to give BG a 2-0 lead. The homer was Witherspoon’s third of the season and first at Bowling Green Ballpark since 2019.
Asheville got one of those runs back in the top of the fourth, chasing Murray from the game. Scott Schreiber led off with a walk and with one out stole second. The throw to second from Bootleggers catcher Roberto Alvarez was errant and allowed Schreiber to take third. A.J. Lee followed up with a sacrifice fly to right, scoring Schreiber to make it a 2-1 game.
The Tourists took the lead against Bootleggers reliever Ezequiel Zabaleta in the sixth with the bases loaded. With one out, Zabaleta walked Schreiber and Alex Holderback before striking out Lee. A walk to Luis Santana loaded the bases for Luis Guerrero, who doubled to center field, scoring Schreiber and Holderback before Santana was thrown out on a relay at the plate to end the inning. The two-run double gave Asheville their first lead of the game, 3-1.
The Tourists scored insurances runs in the seventh and eighth to take a commanding 6-2 lead, but the Bootleggers rallied in the bottom of the eighth. Roberto Alvarez and Osmy Gregorio led off with doubles off the wall in right and both scored when Witherspoon doubled off the right-center field wall to make it a 6-4 game. Witherspoon scored with two outs thanks to a Ruben Cardenas single, making it a one-run game at 6-5. BG got the tying run on base in the ninth but couldn’t convert as Asheville closed out their first win of the series.
Murray held Asheville to one unearned run on two hits with two walks and six strikeouts. Tanner Dodson pitched a scoreless 1.1 innings with two strikeouts with one hit. Zabaleta (1-1) allowed two runs on one hit with three walks and two strikeouts in a loss and a blown save. Miller Hogan threw 1.0 inning out of the bullpen with one hit and an unearned run to go along with two strikeouts. Cristofer Ogando allowed two runs on a hit and a walk with four strikeouts.
Notes: Witherspoon tied a career-high with four RBIs… Witherspoon hit his third home run, tying recently promoted Erik Ostberg to the team-high this season… He’s now the active team leader… Thursday was also Witherspoon’s first multi-hit game of the season… Murray doubled his previous high for strikeouts this season with six… Murray threw 70 pitches, the most for a Bowling Green starter this season… BG pitchers had a streak of 19.2 scoreless innings with Alvarez behind the plate prior to Asheville’s run in the fourth… He and Ruben Cardenas are the only players on Bowling Green to have hit homers on the road and at home this season… BG is 1-1 in games decided by one-run this season… The Hot Rods and Tourists will play the fourth game of the series on Friday… The Hot Rods will send LH Joe LaSorsa (1-0, 0.00) to the mound against Tourists RH R.J. Freure (1-0, 3.86)… Opening weekend begins… 0First pitch will be at 6:35 PM CT… Fans can catch all of the action through the MiLB First Pitch app, tuning into WBGN 94.5 FM and 1340 AM, or visiting https://www.milb.com/bowling-green/fans/audio-listen-live.
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