RailCats fall to Newark
By Ryan Haskell Post-Tribune correspondent June 9, 2012 11:32PM
Updated: July 11, 2012 10:36AM
GARY — Mike Coles came out with a purpose on Saturday night, smacking a home run to left field to get the RailCats going against Newark. Gary proceeded to score three more runs in the second inning and it looked like the RailCats were going to cruise past the Bears for the third straight night.
But the offense fell ice cold the rest of the way.
And the Bears took advantage.
Newark scored a run in the sixth and tallied four in the eighth — all with two outs — as the Bears ended Gary’s win streak at two with a 6-4 victory at the Steel Yard in front of 3,123.
The RailCats made a late rally in the ninth when Coles led off with a double off the left field wall and David Cooper followed with a walk. But former Atlanta Braves and Kansas City Royals pitcher Jorge Vasquez struck out Mike Rohde to end the threat.
Coles was stunned at his locker after the game as he wasn’t sure how to put Saturday’s loss in perspective. Gary was coming off 7-4 and 20-11 wins the prior two nights. He was surprised the offense went into a dry spell just like that.
“It feels good to hit the ball but you’ve got to win at the same time,” said Coles, who finished 2-for-4 to raise his batting average to .309. “I don’t care if I have seven hits, if we don’t win, it doesn’t matter.
“I’d rather go 0-for-5 with a win than 5-for-5 with a loss.”
Manager Greg Tagert was disappointed, too. He said he thought Saturday’s win was a sure thing after his relief pitchers worked out of jams in the sixth and seventh innings, allowing just one run total.
But the four-run eighth did them in.
“Well we gave that one away,” Tagert said. “We certainly had our chances to close that game out. The offense shut down in the middle innings. We’ve been asking a lot of the bullpen.”
“That’s been the story of our season. We win one or two, then lose a game or two. We made mistakes that hurt us. (T.J.) Wohlever hits a guy in the inning before and we have a hit batsmen in that big (four-run) eighth inning. We’re giving away too many free base runners.”
Gary led 4-2 with two outs in the eighth inning before it got away from losing pitcher Chris Allen. Singles by Daryle Ward, Bryce Lane and Nick Santomauro all came around to score giving Newark a 5-4 lead. Courtney Billingslea had the big hit to score Lane and Santomauro. Matt Tomczyk drove in an insurance run to give his team a two-run cushion.