09/08/2010 8:11 PM -
Andrew Cruse (1-0) held the Joliet JackHammers (0-1) to just five hits in a complete-game shutout effort to give the Kansas City T-Bones (1-0) a 1-0 victory in game one of the best-of-five Northern League semifinal round.
Cruse and JackHammers starter Bear Bay (0-1) each went the distance in the contest, matching scoreless frames until a leadoff home run by Ray Sadler began the fifth inning. That was the only blemish for Bay in the contest as the right-hander suffered the loss after allowing one run on five hits while striking out seven over his nine innings of work. Bay did not walk a batter in the game.
Cruse was perfect through four and one-thirds innings before surrendering a double to Freddie Thon in the bottom of the fifth. Joliet put two runners on against the right-hander with one out in the sixth on a walk and a single, but Cruse retired the next two batters to end the threat.
The JackHammers threatened again in the eighth after consecutive one-out singles from Jonathan Wyatt and Kevin Rios. After a pitch to Brad Correll, catcher Keith Hernandez fired an errant pickoff attempt to first that was knocked down by first baseman Gabriel Martinez. Wyatt advanced to third on the error, but Rios was thrown out by Martinez in his attempt to advance to second. Cruse induced a foul popout to Correll to end the inning.
Cruse threw 78 of 115 pitches for strikes in the outing, allowing five hits while walking three and striking out four. Sadler finished the game two-for-four with the T-Bones lone RBI.
Mike Rocco (3-2, 5.34) takes the mound Thursday night for Kansas City against Devin Anderson (7-5, 4.10) and the JackHammers in game two of the series. First pitch is set for 6:30. Catch all the action online at www.tbonesbaseball.com or on radio at KXTR 1660 AM.