The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

June 13, 2014

L'Kings' luck runs out in 11th

Herald Staff Report
The Clinton Herald

---- — CLINTON — Clinton dodged bullets in the sixth, seventh and ninth innings Thursday night to stay within a run of Burlington before finally pulling even in the bottom of the ninth.

The LumberKings escaped again in the top of the 10th. But playing with danger finally caught up to them in the 11th as a pair of wild pitches helped the Bees score the go-ahead run for a 3-2 victory in Clinton’s final home game of the first half of the Midwest League baseball season.

“We had some chances, some opportunities; we just didn’t take advantage of them,” Clinton manager Scott Steinmann said. “The top of that last inning, we kind of shot ourselves in the foot with some wild pitches there and gave them a little bit of a break.”

It was the kind of break the Bees (36-30) no doubt appreciated. They head into the final three games of the first half with a two-game lead over Peoria, Quad Cities and Wisconsin for the final playoff-qualifying spot in the Western Division. Kane County (45-22) already has wrapped up the first-half title.

Seon Gi Kim, who stranded a Burlington runner on third base to end the ninth and 10th innings, was saddled with the loss for Clinton, although he wasn’t around at the end.

Chad Hinshaw led off the 11th with a single to center field, but Kim got Mike Fish to pop out to shortstop Jack Reinheimer. Steinmann then called on Paul Fry to pitch, and he struck out Eric Aguilera for the second out.

But, Fry had control problems after that.

Hinshaw stole second base, and Exicardo Cayones walked on a wild pitch that allowed Hinshaw to take third. Cayones took second on defensive indifference, then Fry uncorked another wild pitch, with Hinshaw scoring what proved to be the winning run.

Joey Krehbiel had no trouble finishing off the win for his fifth save. Chantz Mack flew out, and Corey Simpson and Martin Peguero went down swinging in the bottom of the 11th.

The LumberKings also went down fighting.

Burlington left a runner at third base to end the third, seventh, ninth and 10th innings.

“(Starter Edwin) Diaz did a very nice job throughout the game, then he turned it over to Kim, and he did a good job,” Steinmann said. “I’m proud of the way they pitched overall. A couple free bases here and there, that’s what cost us tonight.”

Clinton’s defense also came through as the L’Kings got out of the sixth with minimal damage when Burlington scored twice to take a 2-1 lead.

Erick Salcedo singled with one out, stole second and went to third on a wild pitch by Diaz. A single by Hinshaw scored Salcedo, but after stealing second base, Hinshaw was caught trying to steal third as Diaz threw to Peguero for the out. Fish walked, stole second and scored on Aguilera’s single to right field, but Aguilera was thrown out as he was caught between first and second.

Mack gave Clinton the opportunity to play on with an RBI single in the bottom of the ninth.

Austin Wilson and Justin Seager hit one-out singles, and Mack brought Wilson in from second with a single to right field. But pinch-runner Lonnie Kauppila was thrown out trying for third base. Simpson followed with a single that sent Mack to third, and Simpson advanced to second on the throw to third. But, Peguero — who doubled and scored Clinton’s first run in the fifth inning on Aaron Barbosa’s single — struck out to end the inning and send the game into extra innings.

“A loss is a loss,” Steinmann said. “It all goes down in the same column, whether you got beat 10 to nothing or one to nothing. It’s still a loss.

“I liked the way we competed. They kept battling; they kept competing. They’re doing the best we can; we’ve just got to continue getting them better.”

Clinton travels to Peoria to finish the first half with games tonight, Saturday and Sunday. The Chiefs pretty much need a sweep to keep their playoff hopes alive.

“If they are in it, we’re going to look to win some games there and finish the first half strong,” Steinmann said.

BEES 3, LUMBERKINGS 2 (11 INNINGS)

Burlington ab r h bi Clinton ab r h bi

Eaves 2b 5 0 0 0 Shank 2b-1b 4 0 1 0

Hinshaw cf 5 1 2 1 Littlewood c 4 0 0 0

Fish lf 3 1 0 0 Reinheimer ss 5 0 0 0

Aguilera 1b 5 0 1 1 Wilson dh 4 1 2 0

Cayones dh 4 0 1 0 Seager 1b 4 0 1 0

Dalton 3b 4 0 0 0 Kauppila pr-2b 1 0 0 0

Mendoza rf 5 0 0 0 Mack rf 5 0 2 1

McGee c 3 0 1 0 Simpson lf 5 0 1 0

Salcedo ss 3 1 1 0 Peguero 3b 5 1 2 0

Barbosa cf 4 0 2 1

Totals 37 3 6 2 Totals 41 2 11 2

Burlington 000 002 000 01 — 3

Clinton 000 010 001 00 — 2

LOB — Burlington 7, Clinton 9. 2B — Cayones (9), Peguero (5). SB — Salcedo (12), Hinshaw 2 (24), Fish (4), Barbosa (4). CS — Hinshaw (8), Peguero (2). S — Shank.

IP H R ER BB SO

Burlington

Etsell 6 6 1 1 0 9

Busenitz 2 0 0 0 0 2

Carlson 1 4 1 1 0 1

Foss W 3-5 1 1 0 0 2 1

Krehbiel S, 5 1 0 0 0 0 2

Clinton

Diaz 6 3 2 2 3 4

Valenza 2 2/3 1 0 0 0 3

Kim L 0-2 1 2/3 2 1 1 0 1

Fry 2/3 0 0 0 2 2

WP — Etsell, Diaz, Valenza, Kim, Fry 2. Balk — Etsell. HBP — Fish (by Valenza). PB — Littlewood (7). U — Adrian Gonzalez (p), Nate Caldwell (b). T — 3:31. Att. — 918.