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8-run second leads Gary to fifth straight victory

07/28/2018 9:39 PM -

Box Score

Game Highlights

Contact: Jared Shlensky

CLEBURNE, Texas — An eight-run second inning and 6.1 innings of three-run ball from Scott Plaza in his first American Association start led the Gary SouthShore RailCats to an 11-4 win over the slumping Cleburne Railroaders on Saturday night at The Depot at Cleburne Station. Gary had every starter reach base at least once for the fifth consecutive game and have now won five straight games, 13 of their last 15 contests and five straight series after taking the first three against Cleburne. Meanwhile, Cleburne has lost a franchise record 10 consecutive games, 13 of their last 14 and five straight series.

Gary (37-27) scored eight of their 11 runs in the second inning after having the first eight of the inning reach safely. Ronnie Mitchell led off the inning with his first Independent Professional Baseball home run off the right field foul for the first run of the game. Wilfredo Gimenez and Reggie Wilson followed with singles before Garrett Copeland drew a walk. With the bases loaded, Will Savage delivered a two-run single to left, bringing home both Gimenez and Wilson. Andy De Jesus followed with a nine-pitch walk before Cole Fabio made it 5-0 with an opposite field, two-run single. Tillman Pugh followed Fabio with a three-run home run to center, capping off the eight-run inning.

Cleburne (20-46) avoided being shutout on Levi Scott’s solo homer to open the fourth. Scott then went deep again in the sixth, trimming the Gary lead to 8-2 on his team-high-tying 10th home run.

The RailCats added their ninth run of the game on Colin Willis’ two-out RBI single to right. Fabio reached base for the third time with a one-out walk before reaching on a wild pitch. Two hitters later, Willis recorded his first hit of the night. The Railroaders answered with a run of their own in the bottom of the seventh, trimming the Gary lead to 11-3. Cameron Monger doubled to left to begin the inning before scoring on a throwing error from pitcher Adam DiPasquale.

Gary added their final two runs of the evening on a two-out RBI single from Savage to center, however, KC Huth muffed the ball in center, allowing Savage to score on the three-base error. The Railroaders added their final run on an RBI single from Chase Simpson. Trevor Sealey singled with one out before scoring on Simpson’s RBI single.

Plaza (1-0) recorded his first win after yielding three runs (two earned) on five hits, walked one and struck out seven in his second appearance with Gary while DiPasquale allowed one run on two hits, walked none and struck out four in his professional baseball debut. Edward Cruz signed with Gary before Saturday’s game and secured the win with a perfect bottom of the ninth.

Jared Mortensen (3-5) was tagged with the loss after allowing a season-high nine runs on eight hits, three walks and six strikeouts over seven innings. After allowing the first eight to reach to begin the top of the second, the 30-year-old right-hander retired the next 16 RailCat hitters.

Gary continues their six-day, seven-game road trip in Texas against the Cleburne Railroaders on Sunday at 6:05 p.m. RailCats’ RHP Gabe Perez (3-1, 3.89) makes his sixth consecutive start against Railroaders RHP Josh Hodges (2-3, 4.79).

Gary returns home to U.S. Steel Yard on Friday, August 3rd for a six-game homestand. Friday’s game vs. the Wichita Wingnuts is Scout Night, Faith and Family Night and a Fifth Third Bank Fireworks Friday.

Jared Shlensky and Brennan Mense bring you all 100 RailCats game this season on WEFM (95.9 FM) and online at Ticket packages for the 2018 Gary SouthShore RailCats season are available online at and can also be purchased by calling the RailCats ticket line at (219) 882-BALL. The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

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