The Springfield Cardinals got a quick start Sunday night at Hammons Field, but honestly got a lot of help from Tulsa Drillers starting pitcher Zach Parker.
In the first inning alone Parker gave up five runs on only three base hits, while walking five. He did find the strike zone in the end, as Mike McCoy struck out with two on to retire the side for Springfield. The Cardinals got the job done early, going up 5-0 at the end of one.
Tulsa wouldn’t stay down long though, getting a long two run homer from catcher Alvin Colina to pull the Drillers to within three runs, 5-2. In fact, the Drillers would plate four more in the third inning. Christian Colonel highlighted the inning with a long home run, to give Tulsa their first lead in the game at 6-5.
Pitcher Eric Haberer had a chance to help himself in the Springfield third with the bases loaded, but struck out. Then hot hitting Mike McCoy, did it again, lacing a solid shot up the middle, and plating two more Cardinal runs. That hit gave McCoy another multi-hit game, and made the score 7-6, in favor of Springfield. Then, after McCoy stole second to give the Cards a pair in scoring position, centerfielder Reid Gorecki would pop-up to short to end the threat, but the damage was done Springfield now lead 7-6.
In the fourth, Amaury Marti connected of his fourth home run at Double-A, launching a shot 373 feet to right center to put Springfield out front 8-6.
Both teams tossed-up zeros in the fifth to hold the score 8-6 in favor of the bird and bats.
Chris Russ came on in relief of Haberer in the sixth. Haberer, allowed six runs (five of which were earned) on seven base hits. The second-year lefty struck out three, while issuing no walks in five full innings of work.
More zeros in the sixth. Where’d the bats go?
Russ worked an inning and two-thirds of two-hit ball, before giving way to lefty Carmen Cali for the final out of the Driller seventh.
Zeros all around in the seventh; we must be setting a new scoreless trend.
Cardinal right hander Cory Doyne threw a 1-2-3 eighth, and Mark Worrell closed the game out in the ninth, working Tulsa in order to pick up his 25th save of the season.
Springfield takes game two of the series 8-6, with Eric Haberer (3-1) picking up the win. Springfield goes to 5-3 on the home stand.
With Corpus Christi on a road trip, Sunday’s attendance of 7,492 put Springfield temporarily in second place in Texas League total attendance behind the Frisco Roughriders.
Gary Campbell can be contacted at email@example.com.