The temperature was in triple digits Tuesday night as the Lincoln Potters welcomed the Walnut Creek Crawdads to town for the first of eight matchups this season. Despite out-hitting their opponent, the Potters fell to Walnut Creek 9-4, marking their seventh loss in the last eight games.
While Lincoln had no problem getting runners on base with 12 hits, it had a hard time bringing them home. Twelve runners were left on base in the contest, bringing the total up to 77 over the last eight games.
Manager Ryan Stevens weighed in on his team's struggles to bring guys home, stating that. “I think the biggest thing is the guys are pressing too hard. When you lose, guys are trying to do too much and trying to hit the homerun instead of the single. I think we need to keep it simple and just try to get a line drive, hit something hard, and move the next guy up and not try to get them all with one swing.”
Despite the struggles of leaving guys on base, Lincoln still had a handful of players contribute at the dish. Justin Olson (New Mexico) started a comeback attempt in the ninth with a towering solo shot deep into the Lincoln night sky. Reece Ragatz (Northern State) drove home two and Jeffrey David (New Mexico) brought one home with a pair of singles.
The Potter pitching had its struggles as well, giving up ten free bases by way of the walk or hit by pitch. Starter Anthony Susac (Arizona) made his Potter debut, but took home the loss in 4.2 innings pitched. Despite the walks, Lincoln still struck out 11 batters in the contest, eight of which came in the final 3.1 innings from the combination of Jake Torres (Sierra), Nate Kujawski (Evansville), and Hunter Hayes (Pacific).
“Tonight you know, we just didn't attack well enough and when we did attack we left it over the thick of the plate and we got hurt,” said Stevens.
The Potters will hit the road tomorrow to take on the Solano Mudcats before returning to Historic McBean Park on Thursday against the Arroyo Seco Saints. After that, Lincoln gets a break from CCL play with a three-game weekend series against the Humboldt Crabs.
You can find tonight’s box score here.
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