July 20, 2017 - Frontier League (FL) - River City Rascals
O'FALLON, MO - The Lake Erie Crushers, presented by Mercy, dropped their series opener with the River City Rascals, 7-3, on Tuesday night. The Crushers (23-30) saw their losing streak extended to four games while the Rascals (29-27) took the first meeting between the two teams in 2017.
The Crushers opened the scoring early in the first inning. L.J. Kalawaia led off with a double, and Sean Hurley brought him in with a two-out single to give Lake Erie a 1-0 advantage after one.
After a quiet first two innings, the Rascals jumped ahead with a three-run third. Johnny Morales led off with a single, and Brandon Thomas drew a base on balls to put runners on first and second. After Jimmy Kerrigan singled in Morales, River City executed a double steal to put two men in scoring position. Josh Silver took advantage of the opportunity, knocking in both runners with double to put the Rascals on top, 3-1.
River City added another trio of runs in the fourth. Josh Ludy started the rally with a one-out single, and Morales put men on first and second with a walk in the next at bat. Two batters later, Kerrigan smacked an RBI single, leaving runners on second and third, and Jason Merjano followed up with a two-run single to give the Rascals a 6-1 lead.
The Crushers battled back in the seventh. Hurley led off with his third base knock of the night, and Josh McAdams launched a shot over the wall in right-center to pull Lake Erie within three.
River City answered back in the bottom half of the inning, plating a run on a pair of hits. Mike Jurgella lifted a double to left-center, moving to third on a bobbled ball by left fielder Connor Simonetti. In the next at bat, Clint Freeman polished off the scoring with an RBI single to push the Rascals' lead to 7-3.
Juan Caballero shouldered the loss for the Crushers. Caballero (3-2) surrendered six earned runs on as many hits while walking three and fanning three in four innings of work. The Crushers and Rascals continue their series at 6:35 p.m. CDT on Wednesday. Payton Lobdell (1-3, 7.09) will make the game two start for Lake Erie.