BEND, Oregon — If Thursday night was a dream, Friday was a nightmare for the AppleSox.
Coming off their highest run output of the season (18) against Kelowna, the AppleSox got pounded 11-1 in their series-opener against the Bend Elks.
Aside from Henrik Reinertsen, who pitched much better than the scorebook would reflect, Wenatchee had nothing going. The AppleSox issued 10 walks, committed three errors and stranded seven runners while mustering only three hits. Wenatchee batters struck out 13 times, nine of which were against Bend starter Gil Luna, who earned the win.
“Henrik competed tonight and he had his stuff,” AppleSox assistant coach Cash Ulrich said after the game. “He got a lot more outs than are actually shown in the book. He was getting ground balls and filled up the zone for us, so he could look in the mirror and know he had a good ball game. I don’t know if the guys behind him could say the same thing.”
“We played a little groggy, but that’s not an excuse, MLB guys play 162 during the season so we got to start learning the grind and on a travel day it doesn’t matter, you have to bring it,” Ulrich concluded.
Reinertsen threw five, struck out two, walked two and allowed six runs – only two of which were earned. Luna was dominant on the other side, mowing through the AppleSox lineup for five innings before getting yanked in the sixth.
“You have to tip your cap to Luna,” Ulrich said. “He is touch, low nineties with movement and a splitter. Johnny Sage came down and said that (Luna) was one of the best lefty arms he’d seen. (So) you have to tip your cap to him, but we have to compete and with two strikes we need to battle and get something in play for the team.”
Despite their lack of hits, Wenatchee got runners in scoring position six of the nine innings. They only capitalized in the ninth, pushing one across on an RBI hit-by-pitch from Kodie Kolden.
Conversely, Bend took advantage of the times they had runners on, scoring in all but two innings, including a two-out, two-run home run by Gabe Gonzalez that busted the game open in the third inning. Vinny Zavolta tacked on another in the fifth with a solo shot to left.
Then the walks started to come.
Wenatchee relievers (Peter Sanchez, Grant Brunt, James Kulak) walked eight batters over the next three innings, leading to five more runs. Sanchez was unable to get an out and allowed three runs to come in and Brunt walked four in only one inning of work. Kulak was the better of the three, striking out four and walking only one.
“We’re hoping to just flush tonight and have new energy and focus tomorrow,” Ulrich said. “
Wenatchee has won only three of its last seven but could build some momentum if they are able to take the next two in Bend before playing the Elks in a three-game series at home next week.
The AppleSox game will be broadcast live on 93.9 with first pitch at 6:35 p.m. Gavin Gorrell (0-2) is listed as the probable starter for Wenatchee.