Baysox's bats heat up in 13th, top Tigers, 7-5

April 11, 1993|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,Staff Writer

LONDON, Ontario -- With a game-time temperature of around 40 degrees and a brisk wind making the wind-chill index seem 15 degrees colder, the Bowie Baysox could think of only one thing.

"We were just wondering which one of us was going to end it," said shortstop Tim Holland. "It was really cold out there with a stiff wind blowing right into your face."

In the top of the 13th inning, right-hander Holland solved the mystery with a two-out double to right-center field off London's only left-hander, Jim Henry, to give the Baysox their second straight Eastern League victory, 7-5, over the Tigers.

The game-winning hit decided a battle of wills dotted with mental mistakes by the Baysox, who persevered with clutch offense and strong relief pitching.

Right-hander Chuck Ricci gained the victory by allowing one single in the final three innings after Brian Wood worked out of a jam in the ninth to force extra innings.

The Baysox dodged a big bullet when London loaded the bases in the ninth against Wood and managed to score only once, tying the game at 5.

A leadoff double by Evanne Pratt and a bunt single by Jim Givens forced Bowie manager Don Buford to walk Brian Cornelius intentionally to fill the bases with none out.

With the Baysox infield in, Darren Milne hit a squibber to Bowie second baseman Brad Tyler, whose only play was to make the out at first as Pratt scored. Then Buford started turning the managerial wheel.

He had Wood, a right-hander, pitch to left-handed batting Mike Rendina with runners at second and third and one out. Wood struck out Rendina on a 3-2 pitch.

Then Buford walked a right-handed hitter, Dan Bautista, to re-load the bases for London catcher Joe Perona, who had not hit the ball out of the infield in four at-bats.

Perona complied with the strategy, striking out for the third time in the game.

But the Baysox couldn't apply a knockout because of their own base-running gaffes in the 11th and 12th innings.

No. 1 draft choice Jeffrey Hammonds, who had four singles, was thrown out attempting to steal second in the 11th to defuse the first rally on a call he disputed with umpire Eric Cooper.

Then in the 12th, Henry picked Jim Wawruck off first with two out and Hammonds at the plate.

But Holland didn't waste his opportunity after a one-out walk to Kyle Washington and a single over shortstop by T. R. Lewis in the 13th.

Brent Miller almost got the run home with a sinking liner to left, but Cornelius made a diving catch to give the Tigers a reprieve. Holland followed with his drive to the wall to score both runners.

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