(TRAVERSE CITY, MI)
Closer Eric Massingham (pictured) trails only Mike Bille (35) for most saves in Evansville Otters history.
--- Starting pitcher Dan Blewett allowed only one run over seven innings and the Evansville Otters offense erupted in the late stages for a 5-1 victory over the Traverse City Beach Bums.
Scoring was scarce over the first few innings against Blewett and right-hander Brooks Belter.
Traverse City scored first with a bases loaded walk in the bottom of the second and Evansville clawed back in the top of the third on a Luis Parache line drive single to right field. Parache finished his first series with the Evansville Otters 6-for-11 with two runs batted in and three runs scored.
With the game even at one, both teams would not score again until the seventh inning. Evansville recorded back to back singles from DeAngelo Mack and Andrew Kuhn which forced pitcher Scott Brown into a bunting scenario. Catcher Brett Chamberlain placed the bunt in front of the plate, but Brown threw the ball wildly down the right field line. Mack scurried around from second base on the play and helped Evansville take the 2-1 lead.
Dan Blewett threw a scoreless bottom of the seventh and closer Eric Massingham entered in the eighth for a two inning save. "Mass" would see the first two men reach base on a hit by pitch and a walk, but the right-hander then caught a line drive back to his stomach, struck out a batter for the second out and induced a groundball to end the threat.
Still leading 2-1, Evansville then rallied for more insurance runs in the ninth. Brett Chamberlain hit a solo home run to left-center field and outfielder Matt Sheely followed a few batters later with a two-run drive down the left field line for another home run.
Massingham would toss a scoreless bottom of the ninth inning, and secure the 5-1 Evansville Otters win.
With the victory, Evansville is now 8-13 this season as Traverse City drops to 13-8.
Dan Blewett (2-1) earns the win for the Otters. After giving up just a single run over seven innings, his earned run average actually jumped up to 0.82 . The loss goes to reliever Scott Brown (0-1) who surrendered the go-ahead unearned run in the seventh inning.
The save, the fourth of the season for Eric Massingham, is the 26th of his career as an Evansville Otter, passing Amad Stephens for second place on the franchise's all time saves list.
The Otters will now travel to Illinois tonight and begin a three-game series at the Normal CornBelters on Monday night. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. CDT at the Corn Crib as left-hander Matt Crim (0-2, 4.01 earned run average) will be opposed by fellow lefty Justin Albert (0-2, 7.15 ERA). Evansville swept Normal on their last trip to the Corn Crib last July 21-23.
Evansville will return home next Thursday when they open a three game series with the London Rippers. Bosse Field will again host Thirsty Thursday, with $1 draft beer. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling the Box Office at (812) 435-8686.
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