Thanks to an offensive outburst, the Winnipeg Goldeyes have begun their climb back up to .500.
A four RBI night by Ray Sadler helped the Goldeyes to a 12-2 win over the Trois-Rivieres Aigles on Tuesday, snapping a three game losing streak in the process.
Josh Mazzola had a three-for-five night at the plate with three RBI for the Goldeyes, who improved to 26-29 on the season. Seven of the nine Goldeyes offensive starters collected at least one hit.
"One guy can't do everything so you have to have contributions from everybody in your lineup," said Goldeyes pitching coach Jamie Vermilyea on the TSN 1290 postgame show.
Tyler Graham began the scoring when he scored on a wild pitch in the first to put the Goldeyes up 1-0. Trois-Rivieres threatened that lead early but Winnipeg starter Matt Rusch pitched out of jams in the first two innings to preserve the score. In the third, Rusch was one pitch away from getting out of another jam but he surrendered a two-out RBI single to Brett Flowers and the Aigles tied it at one.
The scoring remained quiet until the sixth when the Goldeyes grabbed the lead back. Fehlandt Lentini led off with a triple and he was driven in when Sadler hit a single that got past a drawn-in Aigles infield. Winnipeg extended that lead to 3-1 in the inning on a Mazzola RBI double that brought home Sadler.
The Goldeyes blew it open in the seventh. With the bases loaded, Sadler drove a ball off the bottom of the outfield wall. When the play was finished, three runs had scored and Sadler stood at second base as the Goldeyes now led 6-1. They scored twice more in the inning off a Mazzola single to open up a seven run lead.
"We had a big inning put on us last night so it was nice to come out and do the same to them," said Vermilyea. "The guys were feeling it at the plate and they were putting the barrel on the ball to get some key hits."
The Aigles scored once in the eighth but Winnipeg capped off the night with a four-run ninth, highlighted by a two run single from Luis Alen.
Rusch, pitching on three days rest, went five-and-two-thirds innings to collect the victory. He gave up only one run while striking out six. The win is the first by a Goldeyes starter since Justin Garcia was victorious on July 5, a span of nine games.
"I thought he threw fairly well," said Vermilyea. "I liked how he was being aggressive with his fastball early. He was establishing that fastball and keeping guys honest at the plate."
Jeff Schields took the loss for the Aigles. He went six-and-a-third innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits. He struck out one while walking three Goldeyes.
Winnipeg goes for the series win on Wednesday night at 6pm ct. Pete Gehle will get the start for the Goldeyes while Trois-Rivieres will counter with Garrett Bullock. The action starts with the pre-game show on TSN 1290 at 5:30 p.m. with play-by-play voice Paul Edmonds.