By Randy Palmer
Six-run seventh leads Medicine Hat to 8-6 win in Western Canadian Baseball League action
If the Moose Jaw Miller Express face the Medicine Hat Mavericks in the Western Canadian Baseball League playoffs, they’ll need to find a way to avoid giving up runs in bunches.
The Mavericks scored six runs in the top of the seventh and would go on to an 8-6 victory in WCBL action at Ross Wells Park on Wednesday night.
The outing marked the second straight game between the two teams where a big inning led to a Medicine Hat win, after the Mavericks also scored six runs in the seventh in a 10-5 victory on Tuesday.
The loss dropped Moose Jaw’s record to 35-18 and makes their quest for first place overall in the WCBL that much more difficult — they’ll need to win out and hope that both the Okotoks Dawgs and Sylvan Lake lose the remainder of their games to reach that goal.
The Express clinched first place in the East Division a little over a week ago and will face the Swift Current 57’s in the first round of the playoffs beginning Monday at Ross Wells Park.
Moose Jaw once again got off to a great start, scoring a pair of runs in the first and third innings and building a 5-1 lead through four.
They led 5-2 heading into the top of the seventh when everything came apart — reliever Andrew Barger had been solid for Moose Jaw since his return to the team, but gave up four base hits and a walk and surrendered five runs without getting an out.
Julian Gonzalez took over and allowed a run on two hits and two walks before Triston Seitz got the final out in the inning, with Medicine Hat having put up their six runs.
Seitz tossed a scoreless eighth and Kaleb Waller allowed a single hit in a scoreless ninth.
Greyson Barrett had a solid game at the plate, going 2-for-5 with a two-run double in the first inning and four runs batted in total. Dawson Tweet crossed the plate twice, while Austin Gurney also scored a pair of runs, Bobby Pokorney and Michael Speck were also 2-for-4.
The Miller Express are back in action Thursday when they travel to Weyburn before hosting Sylvan Lake on Friday and Saturday for what could be a crucial two-game series. Game times are 7:05 p.m. both nights at Ross Wells Park.