The opening homestand of the 2007 season started and ended great for the Columbus Catfish. It's just those two games in between.
After winning big in game one, then losing games two and three in the 9th inning, the Catfish pounded out 11 hits, led by 2B Joey Callender's 3-for-4 at the plate and 3 RBIs, eeked out a 5-4 win over the Kannapolis Intimidators (White Sox). LF Ryan Royster, C Matt Spring, and 1B Matt Fields each had two hits on the day in contributing to the win.
After starting P Joshua Butler allowed a lead-off home run to Kannapolis 2B John Shelby, the Catfish responded with a run of their own in the bottom of the first. CF Desmond Jennings led off with a walks, stole second, and was sacrificed to third by 3B Brett Grandstrand. Jennings scored on RF Quinn Stewart's grounds out to first, tying the game at 1.
In the top of the 2nd, a walk and two doubles gave Kannapolis a 3-1 lead. The Catfish tied the game in the 4th, when Royster singled to right, Spring singled to left, and Fields singled to right field to lead the bases. Callender's single to center field scored Royster and Spring, tying the game at 3.
Kannapolis took the lead again in the 6th off reliever Wilton Noel, on a double, a ground-out, and a sacrifice fly.
The Catfish took the lead in the 8th. Royster reached on a ground ball single, and moved to second on a wild pitch. Spring reached on an infield single to the shortstop, moving Royster to third. Royster scored on Fields single to right field. Callender then reached on another infield single to short, driving in Spring.
In the ninth inning, P Ryan Owen, who had relieved Noel in the 8th, got out of a little jam to secure the win. Kannapolis C Michael Grace reached on an infield single to third, moved to second on an error by the catcher, and was then sacrificed to third. With the tying run on third with one out, Owen struck out Kannapolis C Francisco Hernandez, then got Shelby to fly out to left field, ending the game.
[From the Columbus Catfish: box score | game log]
The win earns the Catfish a split with Kannapolis, evens their record at 2-2, and brings them to a tie for 4th in the South Division of the South Atlantic League.
They hit the road for an 8-game trip, heading first to Greenville, South Carolina for four games, before heading to Asheville for another four games against the Tourists (Rockies).
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