RailCats stay hot, beat T-Bones
By Michael Osipoff firstname.lastname@example.org or 713-2485 June 24, 2013 11:22PM
Updated: July 26, 2013 6:34AM
GARY — Neither Mother Nature nor Kansas City could stop the RailCats on Monday night.
After rain delayed the start of the game for one hour, 13 minutes, Gary downed the T-Bones 10-6 at the Steel Yard.
Coming off a four-game sweep of Saint Paul, the RailCats (21-15) now have won seven of their last eight games to move a season-best six games over .500. The T-Bones (15-22), in last place in the American Association’s Central Division, have lost seven of their last nine games.
Freshly minted franchise hits leader Mike Massaro drove in four runs, including a bases-clearing triple in a four-run second that got the ball rolling for the RailCats. Drew Martinez went 3-for-5 with a double, two runs scored and an RBI; and Brian Kolb went 2-for-2 — extending his hit streak to 11 games — with two walks, two runs and an RBI.
In the fifth start in his six-plus seasons as a pro, including his second this season with the RailCats, Billy Spottiswood recorded the win, bobbing and weaving through trouble to allow just one run on seven hits in five innings. The T-Bones had at least two baserunners in each of the first four innings, and they left nine runners on base through five.
“I was wondering how we would come out today, and getting a nice start from your starter makes a huge difference,” RailCats manager Greg Tagert said.
“Billy Spottiswood did a nice job today. It’s something he can feel good about, but I don’t want to say he’s still learning because he has a lot of experience, but he’s still pitching a little bit like a reliever; he has good stuff and he has to attack the zone a little quicker.”
— Injury update: Will Krout (1-4, 6.44 ERA), who has been on the disabled list since June 18 because of a shoulder problem, is expected to start Tuesday’s game for the RailCats, against Kansas City right-hander Lucas Irvine (1-3, 3.18). The corresponding transaction had yet to be determined.
Also, no structural damage was found in the shoulder of left-hander James Adkins, who left Friday’s spot start after two innings because of a dead arm.
“We’ll have to make some decisions (about the roster), especially as we near the weekend and before we go on the road next week,” Tagert, referring to the team’s upcoming eight-game trip to Sioux City and Winnipeg, said before the game.
An MRI on starter Stephen Hiscock (biceps tendinitis) came back negative, clearing the path for him to continue his rehab in earnest.
“It’s good news,” Tagert said.
The news, however, was not as good for the RailCats on left-handed relief pitcher Estevan Uriegas. He was scheduled to undergo an MRI, as he continues to have problems with forearm/elbow inflammation.
Hiscock and Uriegas, both on the inactive list, are targeted to return in mid-July. Neither was expected to travel with the team on its next road trip.
— Looking ahead: Morgan Coombs is scheduled to start on Wednesday, but was available out of the bullpen on Monday — and could be on Tuesday — depending on the situation.
“The bullpen’s a little tired right now,” Tagert said.
Alain Quijano, who pitched a complete game on Saturday, is slated to start on Thursday, giving him an extra day of rest.