July 10, 2022
Contact: Ryan Zimmerman
Phone: 219-882-2255
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‘Cats Can’t Catch Dogs in Steel Yard Slugfest 

Gary, IN – The Gary SouthShore RailCats swung the bats well in their Sunday series finale against the Chicago Dogs, but the visitors possessed enough firepower to push through to a 16-12 victory. 

The two squads combined for 28 hits and 13 walks to generate their 28 runs while the Dogs committed four errors in a contest that spanned three hours and 57 minutes. 

Chicago opened the scoring in the top of the first inning as they began the ballgame by striking for three runs.  Two two-out walks led to Stevie Wilkerson’s three-run blast that ignited the Dogs offense right away. 

Two frames later, the Dogs piled on for four more runs to continue their early onslaught.  A pair of singles began the rally before Wilkerson’s base hit brought a run home.  The very next batter, Danny Mars, launched a home run over the right-field wall, extending their lead to 7-0. 

In the bottom of the fourth, the RailCats got their bats going and started chipping away at the deficit.  Michael Woodworth and Victor Nova led off with back-to-back singles and both advanced 90 feet on a wild pitch.  Jesus Marriaga grounded out to score Woodworth, and after a flyout, Michael Cruz got hit by a pitch to place runners on the corners.  Chris Burgess took full advantage as he crushed a double to left field, plating Nova and moving Cruz to third.  Though the next batter struck out, a dropped third strike allowed Cruz to come home and cut Chicago’s lead to 8-3. 

In their next turn at-bat, the Dogs nearly canceled out Gary SouthShore’s three runs by producing a pair of runs.  Mars and Connor Kopach both singled to lead off and moved up one base each following a wild pitch.  Trent Bauer then came through with a two-run single, improving the Chicago advantage to seven. 

Both lineups went quiet in the sixth and seventh innings, but the Dogs sparked back up in the eighth.  They loaded the bases with one out, and Bauer’s fielder’s choice tallied K.C. Hobson for their 11th run. 

Trailing by eight, the RailCats sprung to life in the bottom of the frame.  An error allowed Nate Scantlin to reach base, and a groundout immediately moved him up to second.  The next batter struck out, but the Dogs infield dropped a Marriaga pop-up to deliver Scantlin home while Marriaga reached second base.  Daniel Lingua chipped in a single to bring Marriaga in, and moments later, Cruz blasted a two-run home run to pull within four at 11-7. 

Despite all the Gary SouthShore momentum, the Dogs roared back and put up a crooked number in the top of the ninth.  Three hits, three walks, and a hit-by-pitch supplied five runs as they sent 11 batters to the plate, giving themselves a 16-7 advantage with just a half-inning separating them from a win. 

Down to their final three outs, the RailCats were unwilling to go down without a fight.  Javeyan Williams and Tom Walraven ripped consecutive doubles to kick off a rally, and a groundout moved Walraven to third base.  A Hobson error on a hard-hit Woodworth ground ball resulted in another run, and Nova singled the Gary SouthShore infielder to second.  With two runners aboard, Marriaga doubled to the right-field wall to motor them both around the basepaths, propelling the RailCats to double-digit runs for the second time this week and back within five runs of Chicago. 

Lingua’s ensuing single positioned runners on the corners, but Cruz hit a ground ball that could have ended the game.  However, after a force out at second, an errant throw to first bounced into the stands which awarded Marriaga home plate and Cruz second base, lowering the Dogs lead to four. 

At that point, the RailCats batters ran out of juice.  A strikeout capped off the ninth-inning rally at five and secured the result for the Dogs. 

The RailCats have three days off for the All-Star break, but they return to action on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. as they head north of the border to face the Winnipeg Goldeyes at Shaw Park.  All the action will be streamed on, 95.9 WEFM, and the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network through the Mixlr app.