De Leon's Herculean Relief Outing Not Enough in 16-Inning, 3-2 Loss
GARY, Ind. - The Gary SouthShore RailCats couldn't hold an early 2-0 lead and Mason Davis launched a solo homer off Jorge De Leon in the top of the 16th inning to lead the Kansas City T-Bones past the Gary SouthShore RailCats, 3-2, in a four-hour, 39 minute marathon that spoiled Gary's chance to clinch a North Division title.
The RailCats had their chances, loading the bases in the 14th and 15th inning, then putting two on with nobody out in the 16th, but failed to cash in each time against the Kansas City bullpen, which tossed ten scoreless innings on the night. Gary would strand 15 runners overall on the night.
Jorge De Leon (2-1) worked a career-high 7.0 innings out of the bullpen, striking out a career-high ten batters and allowing just two hits, but picked up a hard-luck loss by surrendering the fateful gopher ball.
Gary (58-41) opened up the scoring in the bottom of the second inning as Tillman Pugh led off the frame with his eighth home run of the season. An inning later, the RailCats would double that lead as Randy Santiesteban blasted a two-out double off the wall in left-center and scored when Pugh sliced a double of his own to deep right to make it a 2-0 game.
Kansas City (62-36) would cut the lead in half in the sixth as Davis roped a leadoff double, then came around to score two batters later on a sacrifice fly by Noah Perio Jr.
RailCats starter Jeff McKenzie would be done following 6.0 innings, allowing a run on five hits with no walks and a strikeout in his team-high 11th quality start.
On the other side, Adam Bleday would allow a pair of two out singles in the bottom of the sixth, but struck out K.C. Huth on a full-count fastball to end the inning and his night. Bleday also worked 6.0 innings, allowing two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts and no walks.
The RailCats would hand Austin Wright a 2-1 lead in the seventh and watch as he worked a 1-2-3 inning. In the eighth, though, Ryan Brett beat out a one-out infield single, then moved to third on Mason Davis' single. After Wright struck out Todd Cunningham, Perio Jr. hit a slow dribbler to first for an RBI infield single, however Davis would be gunned down at the plate to keep it a 2-2 game.
From there, a long string of zeroes followed. Kansas City would see five relievers combine to allow one hit over seven innings of relief. Meanwhile, Jorge De Leon would embark on a Herculean outing in relief, allowing just one hit and striking out nine in his first six innings of work.
In the bottom of the 14th, the RailCats picked a leadoff double from Pugh, who advanced to third, but after two intentional walks, Pasquale Mazzaccoli (4-2), the seventh Kansas City pitcher, would strike out Cole Fabio with the bases loaded and two outs.
In the 15th, Ronnie Mitchell led off the inning with a triple to right, but following two more intentional walks, Mazzaccoli wiggled out once again, inducing a line out to right by Andy Paz with the bases loaded once more.
With one out in the top of the 16th, Davis attacked a first pitch fastball from De Leon, working his career-high seventh inning in relief, and deposited it over the right field wall. In the bottom half of the frame, Gary put two on with nobody out, but couldn't advance either runner against Kansas City's eighth hurler, Patrick Calvano (1), who earned his first save of the year.
Gary wraps up the regular season on Monday at 1:10 p.m. against Kansas City. T-Bones RHP Jared Mortensen (4-6, 4.33) is expected to start in the series finale while the RailCats have yet to announce their starter.
Monday's game is Fan Appreciation Day, another MetroPCS Monday, includes Pre-Game Photos on the field and All Fans Run the Bases after the final out.
Gary begins the North Division Series on Tuesday against the St. Paul Saints with the location and time yet to be determined. The RailCats are offering a special "Playoff Pass" that includes tickets to all 2018 American Association Playoff Games played at U.S. Steel Yard. The Reserved Seat Pass costs $18, and includes one reserved seat ticket to every home playoff game, while the Box Seat Pass costs $20, and includes one box seat ticket to every home playoff game.
Jared Shlensky and Brennan Mense bring you all 100 RailCats game this season on WEFM (95.9 FM) and online at railcatsbaseball.com. Ticket packages for the 2018 Gary SouthShore RailCats season are available online at railcatsbaseball.com and can also be purchased by calling the RailCats ticket line at (219) 882-BALL. The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
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American Association Stories from September 3, 2018
- North Division Champion RailCats Announce North Division Series Schedule - Gary SouthShore Railcats
- Wingnuts Celebrate Final Game at Lawrence-Dumont with Win - Wichita Wingnuts
- RailCats Claim North Division with 3-2 Comeback Win vs. KC - Gary SouthShore Railcats
- Garrett Powers Canaries to Season-Ending Win - Sioux Falls Canaries
- RedHawks Finish 2018 Season with Loss to Canaries - Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks
- AirHogs Wrap 2018 Season, Thomas Named to All-Star Squad - Texas AirHogs
- Railroaders Sweep Final Series of Year - Cleburne Railroaders
- Tickets Now on Sale as Saints Will Host First Two Games of North Division Series on Tuesday and Wednesday - St. Paul Saints
- Cunningham Named All-Star; Host Playoffs Tuesday & Wednesday - Kansas City T-Bones
- Sermo and Garcia Sweep Weekly Awards - Sioux City Explorers
- Perfect 10: Saints Win Season Finale, Wait to See If They Are Division Champs - St. Paul Saints
- Saltdogs Washed out in Season Finale - Lincoln Saltdogs
- Mazzola Reaches Career Milestone, Goldeyes Fall to Saints - Winnipeg Goldeyes
- Curt Smith Chosen as a Postseason All-Star - Lincoln Saltdogs
- Lang, Samson and Sermo Named All-Stars - Sioux City Explorers
- First Baseman Brady Shoemaker and Catcher Justin O'Conner Represent Playoff Bound Saints as Post-Season All-Stars - St. Paul Saints
- Banwart, Tillman, Watkins Snag Postseason Honors - Wichita Wingnuts
- AirHogs Drop Penultimate Game of 2018 - Texas AirHogs
- T-Bones Clinch Playoff Spot; Defeat Gary in 16 Innings - Kansas City T-Bones
- American Association Game Recaps - AA
- De Leon's Herculean Relief Outing Not Enough in 16-Inning, 3-2 Loss - Gary SouthShore Railcats
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