Finish in Style

Finish in Style

The Crushers score 10 runs, get good pitching and beat the Wild Things in the season finale
Box score:


Avon, OH.  --  The Lake Erie Crushers, presented by Mercy, beat the Washington Wild Things, 10-2, as the Crushers were able to get five runs between the fourth and the sixth inning to take the lead and pull away, along with seven strong innings by Juan Caballero (5-1) on Sunday night at All Pro Freight Stadium.


The Crushers (48-48) finish the season going 15-5 over their final 20 games. They finish the 2016 campaign one game behind the River City Rascals for the final wild card spot in the playoffs. The Rascals beat the Southern Illinois Miners on Sunday, 5-1. With the loss, the Wild Things (46-49) finish with a season series record of 8-4 against Lake Erie.


The Crushers scored in the first inning of every game in this series. With one out, tonight, Brendan Costantino and Connor Oliver hit back-to-back singles in the first inning. Jose Barraza then knocked in a run with a ground-rule double to left-center field.


Lake Erie's 1-0 lead would last until the top of the fourth inning. Chris Grayson hit his fifth home run of the season to tie the game. David Popkins hit a one-out double and moved to third on a wild pitch. With two outs, Grant Fink knocked an RBI single to right field, giving Washington a 2-1 lead.


In the bottom of the fourth, the Crushers went back to work. Parker Norris led off the inning and lifted his second homer of the season to right field. Bryan De La Rosa tripled down the line in right. He would score later in the inning as Robb Paller grounded into a double-play to the second baseman, Fink.


In the fifth, Barraza walked and went from first to third on a single by Eric Grabe. Barraza scored on a groundball double play off the bat of Sean Hurley.


Again, the Men of Crush added two runs in the sixth inning. Max Casper doubled with one out and Paller ripped an RBI double to left field. Brendan Costantino reached on a throwing error by the Wild Things' shortstop, Ryne Willard. Paller scored on the play.


The Crushers blew the game open with a four-run eighth inning. Casper was walked to start the inning. Paller singled and then Costantino singled to score Casper from second base. Oliver walked to load the bases. With one out, Grabe roped a two-run single to right field. Hurley capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly to left field.


Crushers' starting pitcher, Caballero, went seven innings, picking up the win. He allowed two runs on four hits and struck out five hitters. Caballero finished the season winning his final five decisions. Brad Duffy and Chandler Jagodzinski pitched an inning of scoreless relief.


The Wild Things' starter, Chase Cunningham (7-10) was given the loss. He pitched five innings and gave up four runs on eight hits and walked five Crushers. Brian O'Keefe gave up two runs, one earned, on three hits in an inning of relief. Devon Davis pitched a scoreless inning before Ashton Perritt entered in the eighth inning. He allowed three hits and four runs while getting one out. Kolin Stanley retired the final two Crushers in that inning.


For the Men of Crush, Grabe finishes the season with a 15 game on-base streak as he had two hits and walked twice, tonight.


Sunday's game was the final contest of the 2016 season.