07/01/2018 10:24 PM
CLEBURNE, TX – The Kansas City T-Bones (25-15) came into the series in Cleburne hotter than the Texas heat, but the Cleburne Railroaders (15-25) used a three-run fifth inning to put the T-Bones on ice in a 5-2 series-clinching win Sunday night at Cleburne.
The game initially looked promising as the T-Bones were the first to score in the top of the third with an RBI single by Dylan Tice, his twelfth of the season, off Cleburne’s starting pitcher Jared Mortensen. The Railroaders were quick, however, to answer with a solo home run by Levi Scott, hit off T-Bones’ starting pitcher Hunter Adkins, tying the game 1-1 in the home half of the third.
The T-Bones would take the lead again in the fourth with their own solo home run by Zach Walters. The lead would not last as Cleburne turned up the heat with a three-run home run hit by Cameron Monger to center field, off relief pitcher Francisco Gracesqui (2-3), who is credited with the loss, bringing the score to 4-2 in favor of Cleburne.
From there Mortensen took over and held the T-Bones league-leading offense in check before leaving with two on and two outs in the bottom of the ninth. The Railroaders John Menken launched another home run to buy an insurance run in the eighth inning off lefty Joe Filomeno, making it 5-2 Cleburne.\
A double by T-Bones’ Nick Torres in the sixth looked promising, but he was left stranded on third unable to be brought home. The T-bones would have runners on base again in the seventh, but a strike-out of Tice would keep Mason Davis and Tucker Pennell stranded on first and second.
Todd Cunningham, who was instrumental in the T-Bones’ win the previous game, went 1-for-4, coming on the heels of the American Association naming him player of the month earlier in the day. Another noticeable absence was the Railroaders MLB veteran Rafael Palmeiro, who was moved to the disabled list shortly before the game started, and the only healthy extra man was Manager Shelby Ford ,who was signed to a contract before the game.
Stand-out pitching by Cleburne’s starting pitcher Jared Mortensen, who is credited with the win, kept Cleburne in the driver’s seat. The former T-Bone threw 136 pitches while striking out 11, going eight innings for the win. Mortensen was a late acquisition by KC in 2017, making two starts for the T-Bones and going 0-0 with 12 innings giving up 10 earned runs with a 7.50 ERA. Shawn Blackwell came in the ninth to get the final out with two on and two out and the T-Bones batting the tying run.
The T-Bones loss in Cleburne marks the end of their three series win streak and nine game win streak was halted on Friday in a 14-13 loss. The T-Bones will face off against the Sioux Falls Canaries, Monday July 2nd at 7:05 p.m. at T-Bones Stadium.
Individual tickets, season, group, mini-plans and nightly party suites are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting the Box Office at T-Bones Stadium or 24/7 at www.tbonesbaseball.com. Box office hours are 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday – Friday and 10:00 am to 2:00 pm Saturday. For additional information or interview requests, members of the media may contact the T-Bones Media Relations Department at (817) 739-3693. Stay tuned to www.tbonesbaseball.com and the T-Bones Facebook and Twitter pages for updates throughout the season.
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