EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) -The Evansville Otters utilized a balanced attack in Friday’s 7-0 series-opening win against the Windy City Thunderbolts, getting both explosive offense and a 10-strikeout performance from starter Tyler Vail.
In front of 4,085 fans at Bosse Field Friday, Vail was sensational from the beginning, recording two strikeouts in the first inning.
Offensively, Ryan Long got things started for the Otters in the bottom of the first on an RBI single that scored Keith Grieshaber to give the Otters an early 1-0 lead.
Grieshaber went hitless in Friday’s game, snapping a 19-game hit streak. With a walk on Friday, Grieshaber’s on-base streak was extended to 26 games.
David Cronin’s RBI single in the bottom of the second scored Jack Meggs to make the score 2-0 Otters.
In the third, Long hit his 12th home run of the season on a solo shot to right field, giving the Otters a three-run cushion after three.
The Otters continued the home run parade in the fourth when Rob Calabrese and Cronin hit solo home runs to make the score 5-0 Otters.
Vail cruised along throughout his six innings pitched of four-hit baseball while striking out 10 batters. He earned the win, improving his record to 5-5.
Windy City starter Kenny Mathews muscled through six innings, surrendering five runs on seven hits. He was given the loss, dropping his record to 3-7.
In the bottom of the seventh, Carlos Castro added an RBI double to score Mike Rizzitello. Castro would come around to score on an RBI groundout by Meggs, extending the Otters’ lead to 7-0.
Newly acquired Otter Brandyn Sittinger threw three scoreless innings with six strikeouts to earn the three-inning save.
Game two will be Saturday at 6:45 p.m. from Bosse Field.
Broadcast coverage can be heard on the radio at 91.5 WUEV-FM and streamed on the Otters Digital Network via YouTube with Dave Nguyen (play-by-play) and Bill McKeon (analyst) on the call.
The Otters are celebrating their 25th anniversary season in 2019.
Saturday is sponsored by A.R.G, Gray Loon Marketing and Young and Established for 90s Night, featuring 90s music, slime giveaway and a special Otters music video. Sunday is presented by Gilda’s Club.
Courtesy: Evansville Otters