Pirates win 3 of 4 games
The Blue Earth Pirates hosted a round-robin on Sunday, July 5, and won both games they played.
“Most teams don’t play over the July 4th weekend,” says Pirates skipper Todd Schmidtke. “But I checked around and Rochester and Fairmont were both interested in coming to play a couple of games.”
Each team played two games during the afternoon and evening.
In the first game of the afternoon, the Pirates defeated the Rochester Blues 6-1.
Aaron Wendt pitched all seven innings for the Pirates, giving up one run on four hits. He struck out an amazing 14 batters in the game, and walked just one.
The Pirates meanwhile got their six runs on five hits. Cody Sukalski, T. J. Schmidtke, Mat Willner, Lee Hodges and Wendt all got one hit each. Besides pitching a great game, Wendt also had three RBI in the game.
The Pirates got two runs in both the first and fourth innings, a single run in the third and sixth innings.
The Pirates had to have a dramatic come-from-behind victory in their second game of the day, winning 4-2 against the Fairmont Martins.
Fairmont got a run in both the first and second innings, including a home run in the second, to take a 2-0 lead throughout most of the game.
Then in the sixth inning, the Pirates’ bats finally got hot.
Sukalski got aboard on an error. Trent Sonnicksen followed with a base hit, and Schmidtke with a sacrifice.
Wendt got a walk to load the bases for Hodges who hit a double to score two runs. Kane Malo was up next and got a base hit scoring two more runs.
That put the home team ahead 4-2 after six innings.
Pitcher Cody Hyland shut down Fairmont in the seventh and Blue Earth had the win.
Hyland allowed just four hits, two walks, and struck out three. The Pirates had six hits, with Malo and Sonnicksen each going 2 for 3 at the plate
The win put the Pirates record at 22-5 for the year.
Pirates 1-1 at tourney
The Blue Earth Pirates won their first game 8-6 in the Green Isle tournament on June 27, but lost their second game and were knocked out of the tourney early.
Blue Earth and St. Joseph exploded for 11 runs between them in the dramatic seventh inning of their game.
The Pirates were behind 2-1 before the start of that inning. They scored seven runs in their half of the frame, while St. Joseph got four runs over the plate.
Cody Sukalski was 2 for 2, including a double. Aaron Wendt was 2 for 4 at the plate. Both had two RBI. So did Lee Hodges who was 1 for 4.
The Pirates got a total of nine hits in the game, while St. Joseph had five.
Wendt was the winning pitcher, going six innings. He gave up the six runs and all five hits, but struck out six. Hodges came in for one inning of relief.
The Pirates lost their second game to the host Green Isle team, 3-1. That knocked them out of the single-elimination tourney.
Blue Earth was trailing 2-0 after one inning, and cut it to 2-1 after the second. But they could never muster another run.
Green Isle got the insurance run in the sixth inning.
The Pirates got only two hits in the game. Wendt had one of them, a double, and Todd Rasmussen the other.
Hodges took the loss, giving up six hits, while striking out four.
“Their pitcher was very good, keeping our batters guessing,” Coach Schmidtke says. “Plus it is hard to beat Green Isle on their home field.”