TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Drillers dropped their second straight game to Springfield Thursday night at ONEOK Field. The Cardinals took control early, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning, while the Drillers struggled to get anything going offensively against Gordon Graceffo. The Springfield starting pitcher retired
TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Drillers dropped their second straight game to Springfield Thursday night at ONEOK Field. The Cardinals took control early, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning, while the Drillers struggled to get anything going offensively against Gordon Graceffo. The Springfield starting pitcher retired Tulsa’s first 17 batters of the game, helping the Cards cruise to an 8-0 victory.
The Redbirds wasted little time in taking the lead. Braden Whalen and Nick Raposo each delivered run-scoring hits in the top of the first inning to give the Cards a quick 2-0 lead.
It remained that way until the Cardinals plated four additional runs in the top of the fourth. They had three hits and a walk in the inning, and all four runners scored. The Cards used two double steals to help their cause with Masyn Winn swiping home on the back end of the second one to up the score to 6-0.
Tulsa did not get its first base runner until there were two outs in the sixth inning. Kekai Rios lined a base hit off the glove of third baseman Jacob Buchberger for his first-ever hit at the Double-A level.
The Drillers finished with three hits in the game.
Graceffo departed after six innings, allowing just the one hit and zero walks. He finished with nine strikeouts while improving his record to 7-4.
HIGHLIGHTS AND HAPPENINGS:
*Rios, who was playing in his first game with the Drillers, reached base two times. He finished 1-2 and walked in the eighth inning, the only free pass issued by Springfield pitchers.
*The game marked the seventh time this season that the Drillers have been shut out. Four of the shutouts have come in the second half of the season.
*The Drillers have now allowed 235 stolen bases this season, the most steals allowed by any Double-A or Triple-A team. Tulsa opponents are swiping bases at an 87% success rate.
*Tulsa starting pitcher Kyle Hurt used 38 pitches to record four outs. He gave up two runs on three hits and two walks. The loss dropped his Double-A record to 1-5.
*Reliever Lael Lockhart had the longest outing of four Drillers pitchers. Lockhart worked 4.2 relief innings, allowing four runs.
*The loss leaves the Drillers with a 68-65 season record. They need one win in their final three games of the regular season to clinch the club’s fifth straight winning season.
The Drillers and Cardinals will meet again on Friday night in game four of their regular season ending six-game series. Starting time at ONEOK Field is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. and the pitching matchup is slated to be:
Springfield – RHP Kyle Leahy (10-7, 5.33)
Tulsa - RHP Nick Nastrini (1-1, 3.51 ERA)