06/29/2003 10:18 AM - Taber Maiers single in the ninth tied it and Chad Shindles double in the eleventh won it as the Kansas City T-Bones (15-20) pull out an exciting 8-7 victory against the Gary SouthShore RailCats (12-22).
The T-Bones went into the bottom of the ninth trailing by one at 7-6. Gary brought in their closer Benji Miller to close the door on the T-Bones, who outhit Gary 14-10 in the game. However, he immediately encountered trouble when Sean Murphy led off the inning with a pinch-hit single. Murphy would advance to second on a passed ball by catcher Rene Pinto and move to third on a groundout by Chris LePine. Thats when Taber Maier stepped to the plate and wasted no time by sending Millers first pitch through the left side of a drawn in infield to tie the game.
After going down in order in the tenth, the T-Bones made sure that the game would end without any drama in the eleventh. Bao Vinh led off the ninth with a sharp single up the middle against Miller. Miller (0-2) would then balk Vinh to second in a move that looked as if it would cost the RailCats dearly. However, the next pitch was even more costly as Chad Shindle sent a rocket into the gap in right-center field that easily scored Vinh to give the T-Bones the victory.
Kansas City closer D.J. Johnson came down hard on Gary hitters. He came into the game with the T-Bones down by one in the eighth inning. He would pitch four innings giving up only one hit while striking out three. The win improves his record to 2-1 and lowers his ERA to 2.21.
One participant in many key plays of the game was Gary leftfielder Tim Flaherty. In the top of the sixth inning he hit a bomb over the left field fence that he admired from home plate to bring the RailCats to within one. His homerun in the seventh put Gary ahead by two and gave him the league lead in homeruns with ten. He then trapped what appeared to T-Bones manager Al Gallagher to be a hit by Ray Brown in the eighth, but third base umpire Terry Barmann ruled it a catch. Luckily, that would not come back to haunt the T-Bones.
The win prevents Kansas City from being the victim of a series sweep. They now travel to Sioux City where they will battle the Explorers in a three game set. The team will then travel back to Kansas City for the July 4th series against the St. Paul Saints. Tickets for that series are still available and can be purchased by calling 913-328-2255.