By: Adam Johnson
The bats were back in action for Sunday’s crucial game in Whiting, Indiana against the second place Oilmen. After disappearing in game two of Saturday’s loss against Lexington, the Hounds offense reappeared and smacked twelve team hits that carried them to the much need, 5-1 victory over rival NWI. We can’t forget the pitching either. The recent success of Hounds pitching has kept DuPage in every single ballgame through this last stretch of nine games in which they came out on top in eight of them. Glancing at the recent box scores it’s easy to see that the Hounds’ offense has been explosive. However, if you trot down a ways on the final box scores and view the final pitching stats, it’s easy to see that the Hounds’ high strike out rates and low walk totals have proved to be just as pivotal. After Sunday’s victory, the Hounds now currently hold a four-game lead over the Oilmen and the Snipes.
Joe Duncan found himself leading off for the sixth straight game where he continues to set the precedent atop the Hounds’ lineup. For Sunday’s ballgame, he reached base three times in his five plate appearances on a walk and two singles.
The Carrier brothers continue to be the run-producing force that sits right in the heart of the DuPage lineup. Trent finished the game out by going two for five with two singles while Shane was a three for three at the plate with three singles. He also reached base a fourth time after being hit by a pitch.
Ryan Fitzgerald continues to see his batting average climb in the month of July. He drove in a game high two runs after going two for four at the plate with two singles. Fitz’s infield mate, Dustin Krob continues to display his power as he smacked a line-drive triple in one of his four plate appearances.
Bobby Wenthe found his bat back in the lineup after a huge day on Saturday. His power also continues to be a force to be reckoned with while he too legged out a RBI triple in one of his four at bats. The Taylor brothers each stepped to the plate once during the contest where they did not let their lone at bat go to waste. Ryan drove in one of the Hounds’ ninth inning insurance runs via a groundout. Zac also drove in a late insurance run after smacking a long double.
Trent Carrier started the game on the mound, marking his first start of the season. His five innings of work were more than impressive, allowing no runs on two hits while striking out one. Newcomer Kyle Sabie came on for his second long relief appearance of the season where he too was impressive. He allowed only one run on three hits over his three innings of work. Finally, Zac Taylor appeared on the mound for the first time this year to throw the final frame of the game where he allowed no runs on no hits while striking out one.
For NWI, Tyler Sroczynski reached base twice on a walk and a double. Sam Geraci went one for four with a double. Stefano Belmote reached twice on a walk and a single while Fred Smart, Alec Olund and Zack Jones all reached base once on singles. Donovan Chandler had the only Oilmen RBI that came on a fielder’s choice in the seventh.
Keith Mahler threw the first seven innings for NWI in which he allowed three runs on eight hits while striking out two. Familiar face Richard Yelnick worked against the Hounds for the fifth time this year and gave up no runs on two hits in his one inning of work. Christian Sullivan came on to throw the ninth for the Oilmen where he gave up two runs on two hits.
The Hounds have a well-deserved day off until their next ballgame, which will be a double header, Tuesday, July 22nd against the Joliet Admirals at Wayne L. King Jr. Field with the first game starting at 3:00 PM (CT). The Hounds currently lead that season series four games to one.
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