Herald Staff Report

CLINTON — Kenn Kasparek returned to the roster Friday and led the Clinton LumberKings to a 6-4 victory against visiting Lansing that ended the LumberKings’ Midwest League baseball losing streak at seven games.

Kasparek, who had been transferred to the roster of Seattle’s Northwest League affiliate, was back in a Clinton uniform and allowed two runs while pitching a career-high seven innings.

Catcher Travis Howell provided a key offensive boost for his batterymate with a two-run home run into the Lumber Lounge that erased a 2-1 deficit. His sixth home run, with two outs in the sixth inning, scored Kris Sanchez from first base and put the LumberKings ahead 3-2.

Ruben Flores came on to strike out Mark Sobolewski on three pitches after Yohermyn Chavez tripled with two outs in the eighth inning. Clinton sealed the win with three runs in the bottom half of the frame.

The Kings tacked on three crucial insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth. Mario Martinez dropped a flare single into right-center, scoring pinch-runner Maximo Mendez for a 4-2 lead. Jake Shaffer then added a two-run single on a liner to center, scoring pinch-runner Luis Nunez and Martinez.

The runs were important because Lansing scored twice in the ninth.

Kasparek (2-4) struck out seven and did not walk a batter. Kasparek replaced Thursday night starter Bobby LaFromboise on the roster. LaFromboise was transferred to the Everett roster, although he likely will stay with the LumberKings.

Clinton (21-20) opens a three-game series against the Great Lakes Loons at 6:30 tonight at Alliant Energy Field. There are fireworks after the game. The teams play 2 p.m. games Sunday and Monday.





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