Royals don’t give anything away in playoff preview with Hamilton

GUELPH – If there’s such a thing as secrets in the Intercounty Baseball League, the Guelph Royals certainly didn’t give any away to the Hamilton Cardinals Tuesday night at Hastings Stadium.

The Royals were held scoreless until the eighth inning in an 8-2 loss to Hamilton in a game that decided that those two teams would be quarter-final opponents when the playoffs start next week.

The result left the Cardinals at 20-15 and locked into a third-place finish while the Royals are sixth at 16-19. Both have a game to play.

The Royals could finish tied with the Welland Jackfish and/or London Majors, the Guelph side would lose the tie-breaker as both teams defeated the Royals 4-1 in their regular-season series. The Toronto Maple Leafs could also finish tied with the Royals, but Guelph won that series 3-2.

Tuesday’s game was a little unusual in that Guelph starter Brett Lawson struggled as he yielded seven runs, six earned, off 10 hits and a walk in 5 1/3 innings. He had seven strikeouts before Yunior Yambatis came in to pitch the remainder of the game. Yambatis gave up an earned run off two hits and a walk and also had a strikeout.

The Royals also failed to take advantage of five Hamilton errors in the game, although they did score an unearned run. The locals committed two errors.

Hamilton jumped ahead early and slowly added to its lead. The Cardinals had a run in the first and never surrendered their lead. They added two more in the third, one in the fourth, three in the sixth and one in the ninth.

Guelph’s runs came in the eighth and ninth innings. Sean Reilly smacked his 12th homer of the season in the eighth and Darius Barlas scored the other run in the ninth on an error by Hamilton second baseman Grant Arnold.

Reilly had a single to go with his homer which was his first round-tripper at home since June 15 and third home homer of the season. Matthew Pilarczyk hit two singles and Angel Villalona clubbed a double. Getting one single apiece were Kyle Kush and Ethan Mohan.

Chris Lazar picked up the win for Hamilton as he held the Royals t four hits in seven innings. He had five strikeouts and didn’t issue a walk. Ben Braun and Wes Markle each pitched an inning in relief and each gave up a run, Markle’s being unearned. Braun surrendered three hits, one more than Markle and both had a strikeout and no walks.

Jon Dziomba, Laine Renaud and Jake Foden each hit homers for Hamilton. Dziomba also hit two singles while Chris Beer had a double and two singles. Renaud also hit a double, Connor Bowie clouted a double and a single and Justin Gideon hit a double.

The Royals are to complete their regular season Saturday with a make-up game against the Kitchener Panthers.

The game will mean nothing to the Royals except that by getting a win they’ll finish with a record one win better than last season.

If the Panthers enter the game, their third in three days, equal in wins with the Barrie Baycats, it could decide first place. Barrie is currently atop the league at 24-10 and Kitchener is second at 23-10.

If Barrie and Kitchener finished tied for first, Barrie gets top spot as the Baycats won the season series with the Panthers 3-2. Strangely, every game in that series was won by the visiting team.

Game time Saturday at Hastings Stadium is 7:30 p.m.

 

Cardinals 8 Royals 2
Hamilton     102-103-001–8 12 5
Guelph          000-000-011–2 9 2
 
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  • Guelph Sports Journal