Unearned Runs Prove Costly for Catfish

JACKSON, TN (July 4) – Four fielding errors contributed to eight unearned runs Tuesday night as the Rockabillys kicked off their 4th of July celebration with an 11-8 win over the Cape Catfish in Jackson, Tennessee.

The loss dropped Cape’s overall record to 22-8, 0-2 in the Prospect League season’s second half, while the Rockabillys improved to 12-18, 1-0 in the second half.

Tuesday night’s game was the first of three consecutive meetings between the Catfish and Rockabillys. The three-game series continues Wednesday night in Cape Girardeau and will finish with a Thursday night game back in Tennessee.

The Rockabillys struck first Tuesday night when, in the bottom of the 2nd with two outs, the bases loaded and a full count, left fielder Griffin Cameron (University of Kentucky) tripled down the right field line to clear the bases and give Jackson an early 3-0 lead with all of the runs unearned.

The game was delayed nearly a half-hour after the 4th inning due to lightning in the area, but the thunder came from Cape’s bats when play resumed. Catfish first baseman Dee Triplett from Cumberland University led off the top of the 5th with a double, catcher Tucker Stockman out of Southern Miss was hit by a pitch and the next batter, designated hitter Caden Bogenpohl, who has enrolled at Missouri State, drilled his first home run of the season over the wall in right center to tie the game.

Still in the 5th, Catfish center fielder Chris Hall (Lincoln Memorial University) walked, stole second on a failed pickoff attempt, and scored on an RBI single to left by Cape third baseman Quinton Borders out of Crowder College.

The Rockabillys had a great scoring chance in the bottom of the 5th, loading the bases with one out, but Catfish starting pitcher Jorge Romero (Los Angeles Pierce College) struck out the next two Jackson batters to end the threat.

Romero left the game after the 5th inning and was in line for the win, but the Rockabillys managed to score twice in the 6th on a Catfish error by left fielder Brody Chrisman (Purdue), a walk issued by reliever Dante Zamudio (Los Angeles Pierce College) a single by Jackson shortstop Ayden Hamilton and a ground-out RBI, giving the Rockabillies a one-run lead.

Cape tied the game in the top of the 7th without a hit when shortstop Creek Robertson, who’s attending Southern Miss, walked, stole second, advanced to third on a ground out to the right side by Hall and scored on a wild pitch thrown by Rockabilly reliever Roman Smith.

Both teams exchanged fireworks in the bottom of the 7th and top of the 8th. The Rockabillys picked up five two-out runs on just three hits, a walk and a throwing error by second baseman Kevin McCarthy that would have ended the inning but instead allowed two runs to score.

The Catfish came back with three runs of their own in the top of the 8th when Rockabilly reliever Ethan Orwig, who had just entered the game, walked the first three batters he faced and then allowed a two-out double off the wall in left center field by Creek Robertson.

Cape gave one of those runs back in the bottom of the 8th when Rockabilly second baseman Jake McCutchen singled to right, stole second and then, with two outs, catcher Wesley Mann hit a grounder to Robertson at short who threw wildly to first allowing McCutchen to score an unearned run, giving Jackson an 11-8 lead.

Rockabilly reliever Colton Brumley pitched a one-two-three 9th to earn his first save of the season.

Zamudio was tagged with the loss, giving him a record of 0-1. He pitched 1 2/3 innings, giving up four hits and seven runs (three earned) while walking four and striking out one Rockabilly batter.

Smith was credited with the win, giving up one Catfish run on no hits in his one inning of work.

The Catfish return to Capaha Field on Wednesday to play the Rockabillys again before returning to Tennessee Thursday to face them a third time this week.

Tickets for Wednesday’s 6:35 p.m. game can be purchased online on the Catfish website, www.capecatfish.com.

GAME NOTE: Catfish infielder Kolten Poorman made his pitching debut Tuesday night, just as Kaden Jeffries did the night before. Poorman pitched 1 1/3 innings, allowing one hit and an unearned run while striking out two and walking none.

Catfish president Glenn Campbell explained that Poorman and Jeffries made mound appearances to give the rest of the pitching staff a rest during a grueling 11-game stretch. “We have some off days coming up which will help get some rest for some of those arms,” Campbell said.