Wichita Lifts Haymarket Park Curse
LINCOLN, Neb. - The Wichita Wingnuts broke an eight-game losing streak at Haymarket Park with a 5-2 win over the Lincoln Saltdogs on Wednesday night.
The streak dates back to the 2017 season, when the Wingnuts were swept in a three-game series. Wichita was also swept in three games during the first road trip of 2018, and dropped the first two games of this series before salvaging the finale.
The game began as a pitchers' duel, as Lincoln starter Mike Tamburino held the Wingnuts (35-22) off the board for seven innings and Jordan Cooper (6-4) allowed just one run on a second-inning RBI single from Angel Reyes. The Saltdogs (29-27) turned it over to their bullpen for the eighth, bringing in right-hander Shairon Martis (1-3). Logan Watkins and Zach Nehrir drew walks to start the inning, then Abel Nieves lined a full-count pitch into right for a single. Watkins raced around to score, then Nehrir sprinted to the plate when Lincoln right fielder TJ Bennett overran the baseball.
With Wichita now in front 2-1, Tony Thomas blasted the first pitch from new reliever Derek Gordon over the fence in left to push the lead to 4-1. Nick Rotola capped the scoring in the inning with a two-out RBI single.
As has been the case all season long at Haymarket Park, the Saltdogs refused to go quietly in the late innings. Christian Ibarra connected for a solo home run in the eighth that trimmed the lead to 5-2, then Lincoln put two on with two out in the ninth against closer Daniel Tillman. Ibarra drove a long fly ball to left, but Thomas ran it down on the warning track for the final out, securing the 14th save of the season for Tillman.
The Wingnuts make their way back to Wichita to open up a four-game series with the Cleburne Railroaders on Thursday. Right-hander Charlie Gillies (5-1, 3.58) will start the opener, while Cleburne has not yet announced their starter. First pitch is scheduled for 6:45 PM, and will be broadcast on 1410 AM/93.9 FM KGSO, TuneIn and americanassociationbaseball.tv.
For information on season tickets, group outings, and party packages, call the Wingnuts main office at (316) 264-NUTS, or visit the Wingnuts official website at www.wichitawingnuts.com.
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