North Little Rock, AR-The Arkansas Travelers were swept in a doubleheader on Friday night by the Springfield Cardinals, 7-5 in the opener and 4-0 in the second game.
The opener saw the Cards race to a 6-0 lead in the first inning. They had six hits off Travs starter Dylan Unsworth while the Travs defense also contributed three errors. Unsworth (1-3) would forge ahead though and make it through 5.1 innings in the game, surrendering only a solo homer after the big first inning. Jack Flaherty continued his excellent start to the season working six innings with two runs allowed to stay perfect with a 6-0 record.
Arkansas' offense would make things interesting though. Down 7-0, the Travs plated a pair in the fifth on RBI hits from Joey Wong and Ian Miller. Then in the seventh, Ryan Casteel delivered a sac fly and Tyler Marlette drove in a pair to cut it to a 2-run game and put the tying runs on base but Blake McKnight recorded the final out to lock down his second save.
In game two, the Travs offense was stymied by four Cardinals pitchers. Trey Nielsen pitched the first three innings. Then Corey Baker and Chandler Hawkins combined for the next three innings with Hawkins twice stranding the tying run in scoring position. Pedro Echemendia then finished off the shutout.
Springfield didn't get on the board until the fifth when Bruce Caldwell punched a two out single to score a run. They would get insurance in the seventh scoring three more times off Steven Ridings. Baker (1-1) got credit for the win while Ridings (0-1) took the loss. Paul Paez, making his first career start tossed three shutout innings to open the game for the Travs on just one hit while striking out five.
Chuck Taylor had a hit in both ends of the double dip to move his hitting streak to 14 straight.
The Travs and Cardinals play game three of their series on Saturday at 5:30. It is Faith and Family Night with a postgame concert from Matt Maher immediately following. Right-hander Tyler Herb (0-2, 5.23) starts for Arkansas against righty Sandy Alcantara (2-2, 6.27) for Springfield. The game will also be broadcast on the Sports Animal 920, the First Pitch App, TuneIn radio and milb.tv.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.