Hounds need 8 innings to beat the Pirates

The Chicago Hounds won 9-5 over the Pirates in an 8-inning 100 degree game at Veterans Memorial Maywood Park this morning. The Hounds are now 14-14, took the season series from the Pirates 2 games to 1, and have just 5 games left in the 2019 CMBA regular season. Tim Riggenbach (#8, P) threw a solid 4 innings to start, and then Kurt Kerrigan (#12, DH/P) threw a just as solid 4 innings in relief.

The Hounds are in 7th place in the standings and after an offseason league rule change, are presently in line to play the Pirates again in a 1-game play-in game on August 3rd. The winner of the play-in game will get the bottom seed and will play the #3 seed (which could be the Aviators, Electrons, or Orioles, or even the Marlins or the Pirates, still too close to call) in the first full round of the playoffs the following weekend.

The Hounds were only able to score single runs for most of the game and it took an extra frame for the Hounds to finally break through. Arron Kruse (#11, 2B) doubled and scored in the first off of an infield single by Nick Schmidt (#23, CF). Brian Lehman (#2, LF) singled in the 3rd and scored on his own RBI (according to the book), but my guess is Kruse hit Lehman in with a single. In the 4th inning Brent Schoenbach (#7, 3B) singled and scored on a fielder’s choice by Tony Correa (#13, C). Kerrigan singled in the 6th and scored on an RBI single by TJ Rinaldi (#1, RF).
The score was 5-4 going into the 7th inning and the Hounds were down to their last out when Schmidt walked and stole second base. Nelson Bowers (#48, DH) then doubled, driving in Schmidt to tie the game! The Hounds then put the game away in the 8th, as Kerrigan walked, Correa singled in Kerrigan, Matthew Steffens (#5, SS) singled in Correa, and then Steffens stole second base, and then stole home from second base (yep, really happened–the catcher missed the ball on the pitch and Steffens just kept running home). Lehman then walked and Kruse drove him in for the 9-5 lead. Kerrigan shut down the Pirates in the bottom of the 8th and the Hounds had a big, and important win.

The Hounds play the Vikings tomorrow at Taft High School at 11:00 am for the only game of the year at Taft. The Vikings and the Yankees essentially are fighting for the same playoff spot as the Hounds. If the Hounds beat the Vikings tomorrow, the Hounds will also take the season series 2 games to 1, and the Vikings will not be able to take the Hounds’s spot (as the Vikings would have a max of 30 points if they win out and the Hounds will already have 30 with the win [the first tiebreaker is the season series]). So, another important game in the final stretch, and we hope to see you there!

(Party at my house after.)