The Wenatchee AppleSox (9-16, 3-7 North), fifth place in the North Division host the Kelowna Falcons (12-13, 6-7 North) for Independence Day at Paul Thomas Sr. Stadium...last night the AppleSox kicked a 7-game losing streak to the curb, with a season-high 12 runs in the victory...the AppleSox are playing their 17th franchise season (12th in the WCL) and are led by second-year skipper, AJ Proszek (38-46) (.452), who is in his 4th season with the Sox...Proszek is assisted by Kyle Hunt and Colton Loomis, both in their first seasons.
LAST NIGHT -- APPLESOX 12, FALCONS 2
WENACTHEE – The Wenatchee AppleSox (9-16), got the offensive explosion they needed, Sunday, on Fireworks Night against the Kelowna Falcons (12-13), with a season-high 12 runs...the scoring started early and often, with the AppleSox jumping on Colby Nealy (1-2) for five runs in the first inning...the six-hit inning was the best for the AppleSox since a nine-run outburst at Bend, and was kick-started by a 2-RBI triple down the right field line for Evan Douglas...Jordan Rathbone, Taylor Borchers, and Alex Gonzales also added RBI singles in the inning for the early lead...Wenatchee’s starter Luke Mattson (1-4) had to battle through command issues early, but settled down to toss six shutout innings...he struck out two batters and allowed just six hits...Borchers, who had a two-hit night after collecting his first Sox hit of the summer, added a sacrifice fly RBI in another five-run inning for the Sox in the fifth inning...the sacrifice came after back-to-back RBI triples for Ryan Kreidler and Rathbone...Shane Martinez also drove a 2-RBI double into the right-center field gap, leading to a 10-0 AppleSox lead after five innings...Wenatchee got two more runs in the seventh, after Kelowna scored its first off of Nick Hoefling in a no-out bases loaded spot...he only allowed a sacrifice fly, and would give up one more in the eighth, for the Falcons’ two runs...the AppleSox seventh-inning runs came home on RBI singles for future Arizona teammates Shane Martinez and Matt Fraizer...Miceal Taylor preserved the win in the ninth inning, striking out the games final batter to help put an end to Wenatchee’s seven-game losing streak.
Last night, the AppleSox came up with their highest scoring game of 2016 on Fireworks Night...12 runs was the most scored by Wenatchee since the AppleSox plated 17 runs at Kelowna against the Falcons, July 30, 2015...the 12 runs scored was not the most by an AppleSox team on Fireworks Night...in fact, the AppleSox clubbed 14, losing 16-14 to the Kirkland Kodiaks on Fireworks Night back in 2004...the 10-run winning margin was the largest on a Fireworks Night game.
THREE IS A MAGIC (RECORD) NUMBER
Three triples last night resulted in four of the AppleSox runs batted in...Wenatchee had previously never hit three triples in a single game...Jordan Rathbone hit his team-leading third triple last night...the team’s record for an individual in triples hit, was set by Keston Hiura last season...he hit 6 triples...the team record for triples is 13, set by the 2011 and 2015 AppleSox...this Wenatchee squad already has 11 this season, with still an entire second half to play.
The AppleSox are averaging 7.5 runs-per-game against the Kelowna Falcons dating back to the start of the 2015 season.
Luke Mattson picked up a quality start in his winning effort last night...it was the AppleSox fifth quality start of the year, and it snapped a four-game losing streak for Mattson.
LOSING STREAK OVER
With the 12-2 win, the AppleSox ended their second 7-game losing streak of the season...after the end of the last losing streak, the AppleSox won 4-straight games, with an 8-2 record over a 10-game stretch.
THE EARLY LEAD
Did you know that last night Wenatchee grabbed just it’s third first-inning home lead of the season?...the previous two were June 29 against the Victoria HarbourCats (2-0)...and June 14 against Walla Walla (1-0)...Wenatchee is now 2-1 at home when grabbing a first-inning lead.
KEEPING THEM AT BAY
The two runs allowed by the AppleSox pitching staff marked the fewest given up since June 24 in a 9-1 on the road at Gresham.
You can call Justin Blatner the AppleSox ‘ace.’...he sports a team-leading 2.03 ERA...Blatner is tied with Grady Miller for the team lead in wins...also has allowed the fewest walks of any Sox starting pitcher (4).
TO COMPLETE WCL FIRST-HALF PLAYOFF PICTURE
All the Corvallis Knights need to complete their first-half crown in the South division is one win over the Pippins in the next two nights, or to win 2-of-3 when the Wenatchee AppleSox come to town...losing the next two to the Pippins, and losing what will be the AppleSox first second-half series, and the Knights final first-half series, would lead to Corvallis losing the spot to the Yakima Valley Pippins, already done with their first-half schedule to the tune of a 15-12 record.