Springfield, MO - The Midland RockHounds rallied for five runs in the 8th inning to claim the 9-4 win against the Springfield Cardinals before 2,422 fans at Hammons Field on Easter Sunday.
Cardinals RHP Matt Pearce (L, 0-2) and RockHounds RHP James Naile dealt a pair of scoreless innings back and forth, before Midland (5-5) broke through in the top of the third. With one away, 3B Jordan Tarsovich and LF Brett Vertigan drew consecutive walks to set the table. DH J.P. Sportman then dealt the go-ahead blow with an RBI single, followed by a two-run double from CF B.J. Boyd for the 3-0 Midland lead.
The Cardinals (5-5) came right back in the bottom of the third. Leading off the inning against Naile, 2B Eliezer Alvarez reached on a base hit. While Naile struck out the next two Cardinals, Alvarez worked around to third on a balk and a stolen base. With one on and two down, LF Nick Martini crushed a two-run home run on top of the indoor training facility in right field, bringing Springfield within one run of tying it, 3-2.
Pearce kept the Cardinals within one run with scoreless work in the fourth and fifth, closing his outing with only the three runs surrendered. LHP Jimmy Reed followed suit with zeros in the sixth and seventh, but the RockHounds padded the lead in the eighth.
Leading off the top of the eighth, RF Tyler Marincov drilled the frame's first pitch over the left-center field fence for a solo shot. One out later, C Andy Paz singled himself on. 2B Max Schrock was then hit by a pitch, before a walk from SS Richie Martin to load the bases with one away. RHP Pedro Echemendia took over on the mound and retired Tarsovich, but Vertigan and Sportman connected on back-to-back two-run singles to open the Midland lead to 8-2.
After Midland RHP Grant Holmes (W, 1-1) had retired nine in a row through three perfect relief innings, the Cardinals struck against him in the bottom of the eighth. C Luis Cruz opened the inning with a walk, but Holmes battled back by retiring the next two in order. CF Oscar Mercado, though, belted a two-run blast to left field, his first Double-A home run, swinging Springfield within four runs, 8-4.
With Echemendia back on the mound, Midland added one final run in the ninth. An error, a base hit and a walk loaded the bases with one down, before Tarsovich worked a bases-loaded free pass to force in a run and account for the eventual final score in the 9-4 win for Midland.
Don't miss Monday Night Baseball vs. Midland at Hammons Field
The Cardinals continue the Opening Homestand with games at Hammons Field every day through Tuesday, April 18. Don't miss any of the fun, including:
-Monday, April 17, 6:30pm - Monday Night Baseball vs. Midland RockHounds. Gates open at 5:30pm.
-Tuesday, April 18, 11:10am - Day Baseball, Great Southern Bank $1 Dog Day, CoxHealth Kids Program Educational Day and High School Leadership Forum for students. Gates open at 10:10am.
For information about becoming a Season Ticket Holder, organizing a Group Outing, booking a Birthday Party or ordering Individual Game Tickets right now, call the Front Office at (417) 863-2143 or visit SpringfieldCardinals.com.
Click here for the complete 2017 Promotional Schedule and to order your tickets right now.
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