Utica, N.Y.– Just after breakfast, the Utica Blue Sox faced off against the Boonville Lumberjacks for the second time in as many days. The night previous the Blue Sox slipped past the Lumberjacks on the back of a superb effort by starting pitcher, Daly Skees. Today the Blue Sox were hoping for a similar performance from Andrew Goldan, a righthanded pitcher out of Rutgers University.
All things considered, the game was quite unique. The Blue Sox officially took the field at 10:43 am in front of a crowd of well over 1,000. This was not just any crowd, rather most of the 1,000-plus fans were screaming children on field trips excited to watch their hometown team play.
The weather also represented a new obstacle, as the sky remained hazy and even took on an orange hue, while the smell of smoke spread throughout Murnane Field. This was because of wildfires taking place hundreds of miles in Canada.
Goldan started out hot quickly getting a 1-2-3 inning in the 1st and faced only 4 batters in the second before retiring the side. Lumberjack’s starter Albert Bobadilla did much the same earning two quick innings in the 1st and 2nd innings.
A walk and string of errors loaded the bases in the top of the 3rd for the Lumberjacks earning Goldan a quick hook in favor of lefty Cole Syversen out of Valparaiso. Right fielder Matthew Layton ripped an 0-2 single to score Dom Jackson. Lumberjack’s shortstop Samuel Fleming also tried to score, however, left fielder Wyatt Jensen showed off his cannon and threw out Fleming at home plate. Unfortunately, the rally did not stop there. Syversen induced a pop-out from the next batter, but first baseman Dylan Mercedes smoked a line drive to right field that scored two more, increasing the Lumberjack’s lead to 3.
Cole Syversen dominated the rest of his relief outing going 5 innings with 0 earned runs, 4 K’s, 4 hits, and 2 walks. The Blue Sox finally struck for their first run of the game in the bottom of the fourth when slugger Will Shannon roped a triple into the right-center gap that scored Norris McClure.
The Blue Sox chipped away at the lead in the 6th inning, scoring another run on a base knock by Shannon who continued to stay hot. Taylor Kaufman also contributed with a clutch opposite-field single that brought the Blue Sox to within 1 in the bottom of the 8th.
The Lumberjacks brought in starting pitcher Jacob Phillips to close out the game. Will Radich and Easton Brenner hit back-to-back two-out singles to put the tying run in scoring position, however, Phillips struck out Pablo Santos to end the game.
The game’s final score was 4-3 in favor of the Lumberjacks. Bobadilla earned his first win of the season by striking out 3 and only allowing 2 earned runs. Goldan was handed the loss despite only giving up 1 earned run. Shannon was the only bat with multiple hits, including the only extra-base hit of the game and two RBIs. Radich also put together a solid game contributing a hit, 2 walks, and he threw a runner out at 2nd base.
The Blue Sox return to action June 7th at Amsterdam where they face off against the undefeated Mohawks.