RECAP | Otters' comeback in exhibition comes up one run short
EVANSVILLE, Ind. - After falling behind early, the Evansville Otters fought back multiple instances in a 6-5 exhibition loss to the Gateway Grizzlies Friday evening.
Gateway opened the scoring in the top of the first with a hard-hit ball by Isaac Benard to first base. The ball had enough on it that it caused first basemen Steven Sensley to misplay it, allowing Trevor Achenbach to score from second base.
The 1-0 lead lasted until the fourth inning when the Otters found the scoreboard for the first time off a home run to left field from leftfielder Jeffery Baez.
In the top of the fifth, Evansville had one of their best pitching performances of the night, when Jake Polancic struck out the side in his only inning of work.
Gateway blew the game open in the top of the sixth, scoring one on an RBI single from Jose Rosario. A base hit and walk later, the bases were loaded for pinch-hitter Pete Zimmerman, who sent a grand slam ball over the left-field wall, advancing the Grizzlies' lead to 6-1.
The Otters' comeback kicked off in the bottom of the 7th inning when the Otters had the bases loaded for the third time in the evening. J.R. Davis kicked off the scoring with an RBI single, good for his third base hit of the night.
An error after a fielder's choice on a Kyle MacDonald ground ball gave the Otters two more runs. Zach West brought the Otters within one with an RBI single to up the middle, but their rally ended there.
Gateway would ride the 6-5 lead all the way to the end. The Grizzlies scored their six runs on six hits, while only stranding four runners. Evansville, however, stranded 11 runners, recording their five runs on seven hits.
The two sides face off once again on Saturday at GCS Credit Union Ballpark in Sauget, Ill. First pitch is scheduled for 6:45 p.m.
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.