RECAP: Otters capture Sunday finale and series win at Miners
MARION, Ill. - The Evansville Otters captured the rubber match of a weekend series against the Southern Illinois Miners in a gritty, 6-5 finale Sunday to conclude their six-game road trip.
The Otters took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning, when back-to-back-to-back, two-out walks loaded the bases for Josh Henderson, who cracked the scoring open with an infield single to the shortstop Yeltsin Gudino, who would cut down John Schultz at the plate for the final out of the inning.
Evansville would tack on a couple more runs in the top of the fourth, when Cristopher Pujols singled to centerfield, driving in Elijah MacNamee and Schultz, who doubled and singled to set the table. That pushed the Otters’ lead to 3-0.
Two innings later, Dakota Phillips added another run to the scoreboard with an opposite field solo shot, his fifth home run of the season. Evansville then led 4-0.
Evansville picked up some insurance in the top of the seventh, as J.R. Davis singled home Andrew Penner before Riley Krane scored on a wild pitch. The Otters would eventually need each run of their 6-0 lead.
Tim Holdgrafer, who had thrown six scoreless innings heading into the seventh, would exit with two Miners across home plate in the inning, one out, and another at third.
At that point, Tyler Spring replaced Holdgrafer on the mound, allowing his first run of the season after issuing two walks, recording an out, and a two-run single from Gudino.
Taylor Wright came on to get the final out of the inning with the tying run at first. Wright ended the Miners’ rally when he got Luke Mangieri to ground out to first. The Otters’ reliever would go on to pitch a scoreless eighth.
With a two-run lead, Logan Sawyer came on to close down his seventh save of the year, working around three hits and a run scored by John Cable in the ninth inning.
The Otters took the rubber match by a 6-5 score. Tim Holdgrafer (3-1) earned his third consecutive victory, while Trent Johnson (0-3) took the loss.
The Otters will return to action at Bosse Field Tuesday to begin a big series against the Florence Y'alls, who sit behind the Otters in second place in the Frontier League West Division standings.
First pitch is at 6:35 p.m. from Bosse Field. Tuesday is also Taco Tuesday at the ballpark, featuring tacos, nachos, frozen margaritas, and discounted Corona and Modelo at the concessions.
The home series will be streamed on Frontier League TV, starting with the pregame show at 6:20 p.m. Ryan Brown (play-by-play) and Bill McKeon (analyst) will be on the call from Bosse Field.
The Evansville Otters are the 2006 and 2016 Frontier League champions.
The Otters play all home games at historic Bosse Field, located at 23 Don Mattingly Way in Evansville, Ind. Stay up-to-date with the Evansville Otters by visiting evansvilleotters.com, or follow the Otters on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
For more information, visit evansvilleotters.com or call (812) 435-8686.