June 13th, 2024

Bats come alive for Mavs in 15-5 win over Bulls

By Ryan McCracken on June 25, 2018.

NEWS PHOTO RYAN MCCRACKEN
Medicine Hat Mavericks first baseman Zach Gray tries to catch Darius Carter of the Lethbridge Bulls with a pick-off attempt during Sunday's Western Major Baseball League game at Athletic Park.


rmccracken@medicinehatnews.com
@MHNMcCracken

The Medicine Hat Mavericks made sure to give their fans a spectacle after spending the majority of last week on the road.

The Mavs combined for 16 hits — including a three-run blast from Sal Rodriguez and a two-run shot off the bat of Jordan Dray — to send the crowd at Athletic Park home happy in a 15-5 blowout victory over the Highway 3 rival Lethbridge Bulls. While it’s more than 2,500 kilometres from home for shortstop Carson Johnson, after days like Sunday he says it sure doesn’t feel like it.

“It’s awesome.I love it here, the fans are awesome.It’s like playing at home,”said Johnson, a Springdale, Ark. product who went 4-for-4 with 1 RBI Sunday. “I just tried to stick with my approach.”

The victory marks Medicine Hat’s 14th over the past 15 games and leaves them sitting atop the Western Major Baseball League’s Western Division standings with a 14-3 record. Third baseman Nolan Rattai —a Hat product who played for the Mavs in 2016 before returning to the team this season — says the recent success is a testament to the amount of trust each player has put into the process and their teammates.

“I think the biggest thing is we’ve come together more as a team,”said Rattai, who was 1-for-2 with 1 RBI and three walks Sunday. “Everybody is molded well. It’s a great group of guys who will do anything for the team and that’s why we’ve been so successful.”

Rodriguez finished his day with 4 RBI in a 3-for-4 outing while lead-off hitter DavidSalgueiro was 3-for-4 with 3 RBI.

Hat starter Matt Brooks collected his first win of the season after holding Lethbridge to a pair of runs on eight hits through six innings. Connor Green took the hill for the seventh and eighth — holding the Bulls to a run on two hits —then Medicine Hat’s Nathan Stark closed out the game in the ninth after two runs on three hits.

Lethbridge’s Chris Messer took the loss after allowing seven runs on seven hits through 3 and 2/3 innings. The Bulls slipped to 7-11 with the loss.

The Mavs and Bulls make the trip to Spitz Stadium for a rematch tonight at 7:05 p.m.

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