05/22/2015 10:54 PM
Ryan Cavan came across the plate with the go-ahead run in the eighth inning. (Photo by John Ellis.)
KANSAS CITY, Kan. – The Kansas City T-Bones won their first home opener in six years, with a 4-2 late-inning win Friday over Lincoln in front of 6,330 at CommunityAmerica Ballpark.
After seeing a 1-0 lead turn into a 2-1 deficit in the fourth, Kansas City was down to its final six outs when it scored three unearned runs in the bottom of the eighth. With Brian Erie on second base after a base hit and a wild pitch, newcomer Ryan Cavan, who missed all of the exhibition season, grounded a ball to shortstop Mike Gilmartin. A wild throw to first from Gilmartin allowed Erie to tie the game at 2-2. Left fielder Adam Bailey kept the momentum going with a double to right field that scored Cavan. The T-Bones added an insurance run when Joe Rapp’s single to right was misplayed by Brian Joynt, scoring Bailey.
“It was how you draw it up,” said T-Bones manager John Massarelli. “We had solid pitching, could have been a bit more sound defensively but I thought we made some good plays when we needed to.”
Cavan helped get the T-Bones on the board when he led off the bottom of the first inning with a double to the left-field corner. The next batter, Kansas City native Jake Blackwood, knocked him in with a single up the middle, putting the T-Bones ahead, 1-0.
T-Bones starter Fernando Hernandez went five innings, giving up four hits and two earned runs. Reliever Joe Van Meter (1-0) came in and struck out five of six batters that he faced, before closer Kris Regas picked up his first save of the season.
“He was solid; he threw strikes,” Massarelli said of Hernandez. “The one inning he gave up a single, he was up in the zone a little bit with that pitch but everything else was down at the knees, running away from hitters and they were beating a lot of balls in the ground.”
The T-Bones and Saltdogs are scheduled to continue their series at 7:05 Saturday night. Tickets are available by calling the Providence Medical Center Box Office at CommunityAmerica Ballpark at 913-328-5618.