WICHITA, KS – The Lincoln Saltdogs smacked five home runs and swept the doubleheader against the Wichita Wingnuts on Wednesday night.
Curt Smith was 6-7 between the two games with a pair of homers. His efforts brought his Saltdogs career hits total to 573 and moved him past Josh Patton for the second most in franchise history.
Game One: Saltdogs 5 Wingnuts 2
The Saltdogs overcame early adversity to take game one over the Wingnuts.
Starting pitcher Eric Wooten faced just two batters before leaving the game with an injury. Reliever Cortland Cox took over and was able to escape the first inning with just allowing one run.
The offense came to the rescue in the top of the second inning. Curt Smith doubled off the center field wall to get it started. Then, Randolph Oduber singled him home to tie the game. T.J. Bennett followed with another hit and Cesar Valera drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Ivan Marin notched a two-out hit to send in Bennett and make it 3-1.
Smith homered in the third and Brandon Jacobs blasted a solo shot in the fifth to complete Lincoln’s scoring.
Wichita tallied a run in the third. Angel Reyes singled with two outs and Tony Thomas batted him in with a double.
Saltdogs reliever Shairon Martis did not allow anything after that. The former MLB pitcher gave up just one hit over the final four innings on the way to earning the win.
Game one was the shortest game of the season, lasting just one hour and 43 minutes.
Game Two: Saltdogs 7 Wingnuts 1
Lincoln jumped on Wichita from the start in the nightcap. Christian Ibarra hit the second pitch of the game over the fence to set the tone. Three batters later, Smith lifted another home run to make it 2-0.
The Saltdogs added to their lead in the third inning. Ivan Marin started the frame with a single. Then, Brandon Jacobs blasted a two-run homer. It was his 18th of the season and put him in second place on the league leaderboard.
Wichita plated its run in the third. Logan Watkins tripled to lead off the inning. Abel Nieves hit him home with a ground ball to the right side to make it 4-1.
Saltdogs starting pitcher Brad Thoutt navigated tricky situations in the first three innings before retiring the final nine batters he faced. Thoutt earned his first professional win by lasting five innings and tying his season-high with five strikeouts.
Lincoln tacked on a couple more runs in the seventh. Smith, Bennett and Valera registered three-straight two-out hits to drive in a few more runs and make it 7-1.
Derek Gordon and J.R. Bunda combined to shutout the Wingnuts over the final two innings.
The Saltdogs did not make an error over the two games. They have played error-free baseball over their last seven games and have made just one miscue in the last nine games.
The Saltdogs go for the series sweep on Thursday. First pitch against the Wingnuts at 7:05 PM with coverage beginning at 6:35 PM on ESPN 101.5 FM 1480 AM and http://www.espn1480.com/lincoln-saltdogs-baseball/.
For more information on the Saltdogs, follow the team on Facebook and Twitter/Instagram @saltdogsball. For ticket information visit https://saltdogs.com/tickets/ or call (402) 474-2255.