BATON ROUGE, Louisiana -- The Bombers worked seamlessly on both sides of the ball despite the appearance of two emergency pitchers and myriad positional rotations during a 9-2 win over the Baton Rouge Rougarou Monday night.
The Bombers struck first for the second game in a row. Kyle Bergeron was able to drive in Ridge Rogers on a double early to establish a ripping hot offensive pace for the Bombers.
Early in the game, Cannon Davis worked around hits on the mound as the starter for Brazos Valley. Davis loaded the bases in the bottom of the second with no walks and no outs, but he dialed in his first strikeout in a Bombers uniform in short order. Logan Sartori turned a double play to end the inning and prevent the Rougarou from pushing any runs across.
Sartori took advantage of an unaware Rougarou infield to steal third and scored on an error to bump the Bombers up 2-0. The Rougarou’s starting pitcher, Zach Fordham, would walk Jordan Yeatts and Cam Haller, and the duo would display the same aggressiveness the Bombers showed Sunday night with a double steal.
Jacob Padilla got a well-deserved night off after catching three games in three days. Kyle Bergeron sat in at catcher as the Bombers await the arrival of Jake Taylor pending Oklahoma State’s collegiate baseball postseason run. Cole Coker moved to second base to fill the void left by Bergeron, and pitcher Brian Williams took Coker’s place in the outfield.
Davis found himself in another loaded bases situation in the third inning, but Yeatts bailed his pitcher out with a 5-3 double play. Davis balked later in the inning, allowing the Rougarou to score and halve the Bombers lead.
Coker remained an offensive stalwart for the Bombers. He reached base for the second time on a single in the fifth inning. Bergeron ripped a double down the right center gap and advanced to third on an error, sending Coker home to give the Bombers a 3-1 lead.
Cam Haller replaced Bryant Shellenbarger in the designated hitter slot on Monday. Shellenbarger’s bat had remained cold through the last few games but made his impact on first base for the Bombers.
However, Shellenbarger would break his cold streak with a single and advanced on an error. The error would also send Williams home to bring the Bombers to a 4-1 lead, prompting a pitching change for the Rougarou. The pitching change wouldn’t help the Rougarou as Ridge Rogers connected quickly to drive in another score.
Not one to let up off the gas, Logan Sartori blasted the first home run of the year for the Bombers, a three-run homer to extend the Bombers domination in an 8-1 ballgame, bringing the Bombers run total to five in the sixth inning. The Rougarou defense dug in for the remainder of the inning, ending the inning with Yeatts on base after a walk.
The Bombers coaching staff elected to continue riding Davis on the mound as their pitching depth had grown thin at the tail end of the road stand. Davis delivered two strikeouts in the bottom of the sixth inning, putting away any notion that he might have been slowing down.
Shellenbarger continued to rebound with style from his hitting slump, crushing a stand-up triple to the right field wall. After another pitching change for the Rougarou, Rogers added to the Bombers red hot offensive night with another RBI single.
Davis’ night would end after six innings pitched. Davis finished the game with three strikeouts and only two runs scored. Chase Kemp, who has been outstanding at first base, took a night off from the bag to stand in as a relief pitcher. Kemp surrendered a lone hit and no runs in his first inning.
In his second inning on the mound, Kemp walked, allowed a single and walked to load the bases with a single out on the board. Kemp walked the next batter, pushing a run in to give the Rougarou their second score on the day. However, the Bombers defense supported their pitcher, producing another double play to end the inning with no further damage.
Leading 9-2 in the bottom of the eighth, Yeatts took the mound to close out the Bombers fourth straight win of the year.
The Bombers end their opening road series undefeated 4-0. The Bombers return home Tuesday to face the still-winless Rougarou.
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