Zac Mitchell hits three-run homer in ninth as RailCats beat Winnipeg
By LaMond Pope firstname.lastname@example.org or 713-2691 June 30, 2013 10:52PM
Railcat's Danny Pulfer congratulates Zac Mitchell in the dugout after the game for his 3 run walk-off home run taking it 6-5 over the Winnipeg Goldeneyes at The Steel Yard on Saturday June 30, 2013. | Jim Karczewski~Sun-Times Media
Updated: August 2, 2013 7:34AM
Gary — Zac Mitchell already had one home run Sunday when he came to bat representing the winning run with two outs in the ninth inning.
The shortstop delivered again, hitting a three-run home run just over the right-field wall to give the RailCats a 6-5 victory against Winnipeg in front of 3,212 fans at U.S. Steel Yard.
“It was one of those days where I was just finding the barrel (of the bat),” Mitchell said.
Mitchell’s homers were his first of his professional career.
Mitchell’s first home run came in his 221st career at-bat. It was a two-run home run in the second inning that cut Winnipeg’s lead to 4-3.
“It was an 0-2 count. They tried to elevate it on me, and they didn’t get it high enough,” he said. “I was just trying to get the ball in play.”
The RailCats went to the ninth trailing 5-3.
Brian Kolb started the rally with a two-out single. Kolb was 3 for 4 and scored twice. Drew Martinez followed with another base hit. Martinez was 2 for 4 with two runs scored and one RBI.
That brought Mitchell to the plate. Winnipeg (21-20) reliever Chris Kissock threw a first-pitch fastball and Mitchell connected for the home run.
“If I didn’t get that pitch, I wasn’t swinging,” Mitchell said. “He happened to throw it right where I wanted it.”
Mitchell went 2 for 4 with the two home runs and five RBI.
“He’s a dynamic player. He competes,” RailCats manager Greg Tagert said. “Like a lot of young players, there’s going to be some inconsistencies. But with that, there’s going to be a huge upside.
“… He’s going to continue to provide some excitement.”
Kyle Lindquist pitched three scoreless relief innings for the win as the RailCats (26-16) capped an exciting homestand. They went 10-1 during the stretch.
“I’m not surprised we played well at home, but certainly, you plan to win every game, you expect to win it, but if it was that easy, they wouldn’t talk about just winning series,” Tagert said. “The most important thing, we won a series against the defending champions today and that’s good for the psyche of this ballclub and our guys.”
Notes: Mike Coles, from Hammond, went 1 for 5 with one RBI and one run scored for Winnipeg. … The RailCats are at Sioux City Tuesday.