By Woodard, Dale on June 10, 2019.
It’s not so much what the Lethbridge Bulls did to get their offence going Saturday night.
It’s more what they did to stop the Brooks Bombers’ in a 14-4 win in Western Canadian Baseball League play at Spitz Stadium.
After the Bulls had their 4-0 lead disappear as the Bombers rallied for four runs in the third inning with none out, the visitors put runners on first and second and looked poised to rough up Lethbridge starter Logan Bexten even more.
However, the threat ended with a blazing grounder to third off the bat of Bomber Brendan Kates as Bulls third baseman Dylan Borman snagged the shot, stepped on third, relayed to second baseman Nic Ankermann who in turn threw a strike to first baseman Kaleb Warden for an around-the-horn, 5-4-3 triple play.
The Bombers never crossed the plate the rest of the way as Bexten recorded the win and the Bulls improved to 5-4.
In addition to being at the tail-end of the triple play, Warden led the Bulls at the plate, batting 5-for-6 in the three-spot with two runs scored and three RBI.
“That’s the first triple play I’ve ever been a part of,” said Warden. “A couple years ago at school we almost turned one and that would’ve been cool, but we didn’t because the ball popped out at the last second. But that was cool, especially because it was around the horn. That’s the one where you’re just like ‘Wow.’ That was a huge momentum killer for them.”
The Bulls jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first inning and tacked on another in the second for a 4-0 cushion.
After getting rung up with a 22-5 loss at Spitz Stadium earlier this week, the Bombers answered back with four runs in the third inning before the Bulls could record a single out.
Then the hosts posted all three outs in one play.
“In the third inning they hit some balls well and they found some holes,” said Bulls head coach Jesse Sawyer. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen, live, a triple play. It was a great play by Borman and a great turn in the middle, that was exactly what we needed to get out of that inning. So it was great timing.”
Warden counted for five of his team’s 18 hits Saturday and is now batting .524 on the season.
An approach he learned at school last year has nicely applied to this season.
“At school this past year our coach was really big on sitting in the shorts,” said Warden. “Shorts is from your belt to your knees. So if you see a good pitch, you attack it.”
“I got to a point in the spring to know where if I see a pitch I really like to get on it and not wait to get into a pitcher’s count. I like to stay in the hitter’s count. It gets me a little more aggressive.”
“He’s a really tough guy to get out,” added Sawyer of his first baseman. “He battles and he can hit some really tough bitches. When he’s in a groove in seeing it well he’s one of the top hitters in the league and we love to have him on our team. It’s nice to have him in the middle of our lineup.”
Hitting leadoff, Bulls centre fielder Robert Bostedt hit 3-for-6 with four runs scored, while Borman was 2-for-5 with two runs scored and two RBI.
Right fielder Grant Kerry and Ankermann were 2-for-5 with two RBI.
Bulls shortstop Liam Vulcano was 2-for-4 with one run scored and two RBI.
Bexton threw five innings, allowing four runs on nine hits and striking out two for his first win of the season. He is now 1-1.
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