WASHINGTON, PA. (WFIE) - Trailing 4-0 heading into the sixth inning, the Evansville Otters were able to cut the deficit in half before the skies opened up with rain, forcing Wednesday’s game at Washington to be called in the sixth inning and giving the Washington Wild Things a 4-2 win.
The win for Washington evens the series, forcing a rubber match Thursday from Washington, Pa.
A four-run third inning for the Wild Things proved to be the difference in Wednesday’s middle game.
Despite the Otters getting the first hit of the game, their offense was shut down a majority of the game, as they only had two hits through five innings.
After 2.5 scoreless innings, one of the better offenses in the Frontier League unleashed its power as the Wild Things sent eight men to the plate, scoring four runs.
Cameron Baranek led off with a single, and Chase Slone reached on an error by J.J. Gould.
After Otters starting pitcher Tyler Vail fielded a ground ball and ran over to first to beat out Ryan Cox, leadoff hitter Blake Adams launched a three-run homer to right field to put the first runs of the game on the board. It would be Adam’s fourth home run on the season and eighth RBI.
Shane Hughes, the next batter, hit a single to keep the hit parade going for Washington.
After Vail struck out Mikael Mogues for the second out, Hector Roa hit an RBI double deep to left centerfield, a rocket that went nearly 400 feet to the wall to give the Wild Things a commanding 4-0 lead.
The Otters’ bats woke up in the top of the sixth.
Entering the inning with only two hits to show for the Otters, second baseman David Cronin led off the inning with an infield single, beating out the throw from Slone at shortstop.
Keith Grieshaber popped up to Slone for the first out, but still left a baserunner on with Ryan Long at the plate.
Long was Tuesday’s hero with a go-ahead three-run homer. On Wednesday, he was able to get the Otters on the board with a two-run blast over the fence in right field. That would cut the Wild Things lead in half, making the score 4-2.
Mother Nature intervened after Dakota Phillips roped a double down the right-field line, as the Otters were starting a two-out rally.
After 30 minutes, the umpires officially called the game with the final score at 4-2.
Michael Austin was credited with the win, improving his record to 3-4 on the season. He went 5.2 innings, allowing two runs on five hits with two strikeouts.
Vail was given the loss, tossing five innings, surrendering four runs – two earned – on five hits with two strikeouts. His ERA improved to 4.77, despite his 1-3 record.
The rubber match will be set for Thursday at 6:05 p.m. and can be heard on the radio at 91.5 FM WUEV or at evansvilleotters.com with Dave Nguyen on the call.
Austin Nicely will take the mound for the Otters and will be opposed by John Havird.
The Otters are celebrating their 25th anniversary season in 2019.
The Otters will return home to Bosse Field June 25 for a six-game homestand against the Schaumburg Boomers and River City Rascals.
Highlighted promotions for that homestand include $2 Tuesday, Deaconess Strike Out Stroke Night, 14 WFIE and Bud Light Thirsty Thursday, Holly’s House and Deaconess Women’s Hospital Night, Deaconess Employee Night and Princess Night with postgame fireworks, and Sunday’s series finale presented by North American Light, an Indiana Tool Plant.
To purchase a season ticket or group outing package, call (812) 435-8686 or visit the Bosse Field front office at 23 Don Mattingly Way, Evansville, Ind. The front office is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Evansville Otters are the 2006 and 2016 Frontier League champions.
The Otters play all home games at historic Bosse Field, located at 23 Don Mattingly Way in Evansville, Ind. Stay up-to-date with the Evansville Otters by visiting evansvilleotters.com, or follow the Otters on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.