CRESTWOOD, IL – Doug Shields pitched a complete game for the Rascals Sunday night as the ThunderBolts ended the season’s first half with a 3-1 loss at Standard Bank Stadium.
The Rascals scored two early runs against Stephen Sauer. They got one in the first, when Eric Williams walked, stole second and was brought home by a Jason Patton single. Their second run came in the second when Josh Workman singled and reached third before Ben Hewett scored him on a suicide squeeze.
The Bolts got their run in the bottom of the third inning. A single, error and hit batter loaded the bases with no outs, but they were only able to get one man across the plate. Zach Aakhus scored on a Mike Torres sacrifice fly.
After allowing the two early runs, Sauer settled down and pitched a strong seven innings. Though the Rascals had a baserunner in every inning, they only once had a serious threat against the Windy City starter. In the sixth, they loaded the base with one out but couldn’t get any runs.
The ThunderBolts, meanwhile, had just three total baserunners after the fourth inning and only one man in scoring position.
The final run was scored in the eighth, when Ben Hewett dropped down another squeeze bunt to score Workman.
Shields (2-0) allowed just five hits and one walk while striking out ten in his first professional start. Sauer (4-4) gave up two runs in seven innings for the loss.
The ThunderBolts follow Sunday’s game with the all-star break. Six Bolts will be appearing at the All-Star Game, Chad Cregar, Mike Recchia, Stephen Sauer, Mike Torres, Chris Wade and Dustin Williams. Cregar will also participate in the State Farm Home Run Derby on Tuesday.
The next game for the team will be Friday, July 13, when the London Rippers come to town. It will be Budweiser Fill ‘R Up Friday with domestic draft beer selling for just $1.25. Game one of the series will start at 7:05 and the broadcast can be heard on sportsjuice.com.