CALGARY, Alb. – The two best offenses in the Northern League combined to score 25 runs tonight, with the Kansas City T-Bones coming out on top of the Calgary Vipers 14-11 at Foothills Stadium in Calgary, Alberta.
Geoff McCallum got Kansas City out in front early as he led off the contest with a solo home run off Jeff Groeger, giving T-Bones starter Jonathan Krysa an early 1-0 lead. However, the Vipers responded in the bottom of the frame when Krysa hit leadoff hitter Darryl Brinkley and walked Drew Miller and Carlos Duncan to load the bases with nobody out. Jason Colson drove Brinkley in with a sacrifice fly and former T-Bone Kyle Nichols hit a two-run single to clear the bases and give Calgary a 3-0 advantage.
Kansas City took the lead back in the second with a three-run frame, scoring two on a single from McCallum. But the Vipers answered quickly again, scoring two runs without getting a hit to take a 5-4 lead. McCallum finished the game five-for-six with three RBI, falling a triple short of the cycle.
A two-run double by Rob Watson tied the game in the fourth, but Calgary continued to push back, scoring three on a home run from Drew Miller in the bottom of the frame to reclaim the lead. Al Benjamin homered in the fifth for the T-Bones, pulling them within two before the Vipers scored two more in their half, chasing Krysa from the game. Krysa faced two batters in the fifth and left the game after they reached on a single and an error by third baseman Neb Brown. He was charged with 11 runs in his four innings, surrendering five hits while walking six and hitting a batter in a no decision.
Kansas City re-tied the contest in the sixth, scoring four runs on four hits off Viper reliever Curtis Moenter who came in for Groeger. Groeger allowed seven runs on 10 hits in five innings of work. A three-run double from Calvin Pickering capped off the game-tying frame for the T-Bones.
Dan Jackson relieved Krysa and went two scoreless innings before giving way to Danny Core. Core pitched a scoreless seventh before the T-Bones took the final lead in the eighth inning off Vipers reliever Tom Lyons on an RBI single from Benjamin. Lyons took the loss for Calgary, allowing one run on four hits in one and one-third innings of relief.
Core stayed in to pitch a scoreless eighth before Kansas City added two insurance runs in the ninth off Geoff Freeborn on a double from Watson, pushing their lead to three. Core picked up the victory for Kansas City and Matt Schweitzer threw a perfect ninth for his fourth save of the season.
Game Notes: The T-Bones had three players drive in three or more runs: McCallum and Pickering (3); and Watson (5)…Krysa allowed the first batter to reach safely in all five innings he appeared with three walks, one hit batter and a single…Neb Brown extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a single in the second…Calgary and Kansas City entered the game first and second in runs scored respectively and are now the only two teams in the league with 400+ runs scored as a team: Calgary with 417 and Kansas City with 413.
– Kansas City T-Bones –