Kanzler Sends Steamers to Walk-off WinJuly 3, 2012 - Coastal Plain League (Coastal Plain) Edenton Steamers
Left-handed pitcher Justin D'Amato (St. John Fisher College) made his fifth start of the season for the Steamers against right-handed pitcher Josh Heddinger for the Pilots, who made his fourth start of the season.
Edenton took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Jason Kanzler (University at Buffalo) singled. Two batters later Blaise Fernandez (George Mason University) laid into a Heddinger pitch and hit it over the left field wall for the 2-0 Steamer lead.
The Steamers added a run in the bottom of the third inning. With two outs, Adam Kirsch (Florida International University) singled. Robbie Zinsmeister (Indiana University of Pennsylvania) singled right behind him and Kanzler walked to load the bases. Koby Kraemer (Indiana State University) worked an RBI base on balls to push home Kirsch and give the Steamers a 3-0 lead.
The lead evaporated in the top of the fourth against D'Amato when Peninsula scored four times in the inning. D'Amato had danced around trouble in his previous three innings, stranding two Pilot base runners in each of the first three frames. D'Amato issued a one out walk to Josh Silver and then two batters later with two outs, Brett Blevins reached on an infield bunt single to put runners at first and second. Josh Eldridge singled in Silver to make it 3-1 Steamers. After a walk to Nick Thompson, Gino Escalante hit a two-run double to tie the ball game at 3-3. D'Amato was lifted after the double for right-handed pitcher David Teasley (Mercer University). Teasley relinquished a single to Danny Grauer that scored Thompson for a 4-3 Pilots lead.
D'Amato pitched 3.2 innings and allowed four runs (all earned) on seven hits and five walks; he added two strikeouts.
Peninsula added one more run on a solo home run off Teasley by Josh Silver, his first of the season for the Pilots to push the lead to 5-3 Pilots in the fifth.
During the home half of the fifth inning, Blaise Fernandez struck again with the long ball. With one out Kraemer doubled and Fernandez planted a Heddinger pitch over the right field wall for his second two-run home run of the game and it tied the game 5-5.
Peninsula edged ahead in the top of the seventh with a solo homerun off of right-handed pitcher Matt Duncan (Morehead State University) by Josh Henderson to make it 6-5 Pilots.
Teasley pitched 2.1 and allowed one run (earned) on two hits and one walk, with no strikeouts. Duncan pitched one inning and allowed the one run (earned) on one walk and he struck out two Pilots.
DJ Johnson (Mercer University) emerged from the Steamer bullpen in the top of the eighth and gave up a one out triple to Escalante, who finished his night a home run shy of the cycle. Grauer doubled him home for a 7-5 Pilots lead.
Johnson pitched one inning and allowed one run (earned) on two hits with no walks and no strikeouts.
In the bottom of the eighth the Steamers mounted their second two-run comeback. Brad Zambron began the inning, his third inning of work. Zambron had retired all five Steamers he had faced since replacing Heddinger with one out in bottom of the sixth. Wes Meadows (Otterbein University) was inserted into the lineup as a pinch hitter and doubled. Michael Bonner entered the ball game and induced a Wilbur Nevarez (Lubbock Christian University) fly out to right field. Bonner then issued back-to-back walks to Madison Beaird (Arkansas Tech University) and Kirsch. The Pilots went back to the bullpen and called upon Brandon Vick, a lefty, to finish the job. Zinsmeister hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield to score Meadows from third and make it a 7-6 game. Kanzler came to the plate and did not disappoint, he lined an RBI single to right field to score Beaird and tie the game at 7-7.
Right-handed pitcher Jordan Egan (Norfolk State University) entered the game and pitched a scoreless ninth inning for Edenton. Vick returned the favor for the Pilots, retiring the Steamers in order in the bottom of the ninth
Peninsula reclaimed the lead in the top of the tenth against Egan after he gave up an infield single to Escalante. Grauer then walked and Henderson hit a comebacker to Egan on the mound. Egan caught the pinch runner DJ Martinez off of third base and threw home to Nevarez, who threw to Kraemer at third base to retire Martinez for the second out. Joey Andrews was then walked to load the bases and Josh Silver lined a two-run single to right field that scored Grauer and Henderson to put the Pilots ahead again 9-7. On the single Andrews was thrown out after rounding third base too far to end the inning but the damage was done.
Vick remained in the game for the bottom of the tenth to try and close out the win for Peninsula. Nevarez singled to begin the inning and was replaced by Michael Massi (Mercer University) and Beaird reached on an infield single. Kirsch laid down a sacrifice bunt that moved up both runners and Zinsmeister tied the game yet again with a two-run double that scored Massi and Beaird. Up next, the Reigning CPL Rawlings Hitter of the Week, Jason Kanzler. Kanzler took a pitch from Vick and hit it over the right field wall for a two-run walk-off home run in the bottom of the tenth inning for the 11-9 Steamer win.
Kanzler extends his hitting streak to seven games with his three hits against the Pilots while Kraemer extends his hitting streak to ten games, the longest streak by any Steamer this season with his double in the fifth inning. Blaise Fernandez led the day with four RBIs and Zinsmeister added three more RBIs after his four RBI day on Saturday June 30th.
Egan earned the win in relief, he improved to 2-1 while Brandon Vick took the loss, and he falls to 1-3 on the season.
The Edenton Steamers are a proud member of the Coastal Plain League, the nation's hottest summer collegiate baseball league. Celebrating its 16th season in 2012, the CPL features 14 teams playing in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The CPL gives college players the chance to refine their skills with the use of wooden bats. Players are housed with local host families for the summer and past experiences have been very positive for both players and hosts. Furthermore, the CPL has had over 1,000 alumni drafted and 52 alums - including 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander - make their Major League debut thus far. For more information on the Coastal Plain League, please visit the league website at www.coastalplain.com, and be sure to friend us on Facebook (at www.facebook.com/coastalplainleague) and follow us via Twitter (as cpleague).
Coastal Plain League Stories from July 3, 2012
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