Dateline: Running Cedar
The White Sox came into Running Cedar feeling confident after their opening day win over the Reds. It was a great day and Coach Grossman looked very happy to be back in the dugout. Matt led off with a single and Mason hit a hard shot to center to move Matt to third. Mason cleanly stole second to put runners on third and second. With two outs, Jack hit a sharp single to right to score two runs. Jack again got the start and gave up a clean single to center. The runner then attempted to steal second, Matt made a great throw but the defense missed the ball and turned the whole thing into a run on a series of errors. The coaches grumbled and then encouraged the team to get back to work. Jack settled down and the next batter hit a grounder to Ben at short who made a nice play as he fired to Matt at first for the out. The better hit a high popup to second base which Michael settled under and caught for out two. The defense was looking better. Jack struck out the last batter of the inning. After one it was 2-1 Reds.
Reds bats were quiet in the second but Jack struck out two to hold the White Sox. In the third, the bottom of the order started things off. Sean smashed a single to left. Sean moved to second on a wild pitch. Omar beat out an infield hit to move Sean to third. Juan walked to load the bases with no outs. Matt drilled a single to right to score two Sean and Omar. Jack singled for his second hit on the day and Alec hit a long double to left to score Ian and Jack. Ben came on in relief and pitched a great inning. First, Jack made a nice play on a grounder to short for out one. The second batter singled to left and tried to stretch it to a double. Clearly the White Sox had not heard of Juan’s arm. Juan fired to second and got the runner by a step. Ben struck out the White Sox cleanup hitter the end the inning. After three it was 6-1 Reds.
The Reds went down quietly in the fourth and Ben started the fourth. The first batter hit a sharp double to left. The next batter struck out. Garrett started warm-up up in the bullpen. Ben walked the next batter and Coach Grossman signaled for Garrett to come in. A wild pitch moved the runner to third. Garrett did a fantastic job in the relief. He struck out the next batter for out two. Then on a wild pitch, Ian at catcher made a great play and got the ball who flipped to Garret for a big out ant home. After four it was Reds 6 White Sox 2.
The Reds picked up some key insurance runs in the fifth. Juan was hit by a pitch and cleanly stole second base. Matt got his second RBI on the day and his third hit with a clean single to right center. Juan scored. Mason smashed a long double to left to score Matt. The Reds went down quietly after that. The Reds now led 8-2. Mason came on and shut down the White Sox on two more strikeouts. A couple of errors, a couple of walks and misplayed balls resulted in three runs, but Mason stayed calm and the game ended 8-5 Reds.
Coach Grossman said “Its nice to split a season series with a team as good as the White Sox. The last time we played these guys we got seven hits, this time it was eleven. Even better than that we held them to seven hits. I was very impressed with Alec’s big double and Ian did a wonderful job behind the plate. With Nick out that, really helped. Jack again looked great on the mound. This is the first game we’ve used four pitchers and I’m very happy about that. It gives us much needed depth in the bullpen. If our offense can keep scoring 8 or 10 runs a game I think our defense and pitching will continue to improve.” Coach Goldstein said “Another solid game. We still need to work on our defense, but the bats are looking good.”