Miners get no hit in DH split with Paints |  Sports

Miners get no hit in DH split with Paints | Sports | Pro Club Bd

A no-hitter is never considered a consolation prize, but Gunnar Boehm was one shot away from doing something that has only been accomplished once in Chillicothe Paints history.

It is in order. He will take it.

Facing just one batter above the minimum, Boehm threw the first no-hitter of his baseball life, leading the Paints to a 2-0 win over the West Virginia Miners for a double-header split Friday night at Linda K. Epling Stadium.

The Miners won the opener in a wild game 8-4.

At the nightcap, Böhm (2-3) was as efficient as it gets. He threw six pitches in each of the first two innings and finished the game with seven innings with 70-51 on strikes. He struck eight.

“It’s huge,” Boehm said. “I have to give my catcher (Mike Sprockett) a big credit tonight. Called a great game and was able to score a lot of pitches in the hitting zone, good mix, kept them off balance all night. Hats off to him. He was awesome. “

The right-hander was perfect until six but met Brittain Shander, who was leading on the seventh. Silas Butler flopped out and Alex Christie and Devin Hooper flew out and Boehm had his no-hitter.

“I only live in the strike zone,” he said. “Coach White says it all the time, he thinks we have the best pitching staff in the league and if our stuff plays in the zone we’re going to come out and beat the guys. That’s been the philosophy all year so far and we’re doing pretty well.”

“Excellent work man. The biggest thing was just the competition,” said Paints manager Jackson White. “That’s the most important thing we preach to our boys. We try something competitive every day when we play tag. In this way they will challenge themselves and in this way they will get better. That’s how you grow, that’s how you grow to become better as a pitcher and as a competitive human. So it’s something they do every day.

Boehm sought to join Travis Lakins as the only pitcher to throw perfect plays for the Paints, who have been members of the Prospect League since 2009. Ironically, Lakins’ jewel faced the Miners on June 19, 2014 in Chillicothe.

“I was trying to hit back and throw it really, really hard, but obviously I went a bit on the arm side,” Boehm said of the Shander shot. “It was okay. We were able to get around it and save the no-hitter.”

Miners starter Tyler Lafferty, making his debut, and assists Noah Canterbury and Devin Hooper did well but were overshadowed by Boehm. Lafferty (0-1) gave up all four hits to the Paints, who were down to a baserunner after the fourth inning. He crossed out four and went one.

The Paints took a 1-0 lead in the first game when Santrell Farmer hit a single on the first pitch of the game, moving up to third with one penalty and scoring on a wild pitch.

Cam Bowen’s groundout drove in Owen Wilson in the fourth for the game’s only other run.

In an eventful start, the Miners drew the first blood in the double header.

With the 2-2 draw at the end of the fifth game, Miners first baseman Coby Tweten was ejected for arguing with a called third strike to end the inning. Coach Travis Odom was then thrown a batter into the top of the sixth.

Odom acted as manager with Tim Epling out of town and trainer AB Brown, who was ill. Brad Jacob took over the rest of the way.

The Paints went up two runs twice, including 4-2 on top of the sixth on Anthony Steele’s two-run opposing homer to the left. But the miners answered decisively both times with a sixth six.

The inning started when Hooper singled out Chillicothe-release Cal McAninch, but was forced into second place when Hayden Skipper got a fielder’s pick.

That’s when everything collapsed for the Paints.

Blake Lazaris hit a sharp third-place grounder that Tim Orr set up, but his throw couldn’t be handled by second baseman Wilson and went into right field. This put Skipper in third place and the Miners had runners in the corners.

A single to the right by Zach Doss drove Skipper to a 4-3 before Eddie Leon went to load the bases.

As Shander punched, Sprockett fired at the second to try to catch Lazaris napping. However, the throw could not be handled and Doss scored to tie the game.

Shander dropped a single to the right to run in Lazaris with the go-ahead run. A little later, Christie walked to load the bases.

Canterbury – in his only appearance on the plate after replacing Tweten – pulled a four-pitch walk to take a 6-4 Miners lead in Leon.

That was chasing McAninch (0-1), and Hooper, batting for the second time in the inning, greeted Todd Bangston with a two-run single to make it a four-run game.

All six runs were undeserved.

The Miners rally made starter Brett Whiteman the winner, who was eliminated in the seventh with two outs after hitting his 95 pitch limit.

Whiteman (3-1) hit six and walked one while conceding seven hits and four earned runs over 6 2/3 innings.

“He did great,” said Odom. “I couldn’t ask for more, especially in our current situation. We’re just tough with pitchers right now, so he stepped up and gave us a good, solid showing and helped us get through game two and take care of yourself (Saturday).”

Both teams played with exhausted squads due to the usual mid-July ailments – injuries, coach-ordered shutdowns and homesickness. The Miners had 18 players and the Paints had 17, including some unavailable pitchers.

It’s getting worse for the miners. Tweten, for example, may have played its last game. He was due to make the long drive home to North Dakota early next week before he was kicked out.

“We just have to make the best of the situation and save her,” Odom said. “The group of people that stay, they come and fight tooth and nail every day. Eddie Leon steps up and throws the last (out) of the (first) game and the second game back behind the plate and catching all seven. So it’s these guys that are stepping up and really taking on the roles that they wouldn’t normally take on.

The teams meet again on Saturday in Beckley with a first pitch at 6:35 p.m

The July 4th fireworks show, postponed from July 2nd, will take place after the game.

Tickets for all games can be purchased online at www.itickets.com/events/463054.

Email: gfauber@register-herald.com; Follow @gfauber5 on Twitter

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.