06/28/2016 7:15 AM
Joliet Admirals (15-10)
at Northwest Indiana Oilmen (12-12)
June 28, 2016 • 1:20 p.m. • Whiting, Ind.
Radio: NWIOilmen.com (1 p.m. pregame)
NWI’s Sam Geraci (Parkland / Illinois Springfield / Steger, Ill.) vs. Joliet’s Jackson Fischer (Carthage / Westmont, Ill.)
The Oilmen face a quick turnaround as they play the second half of a night game followed by a day game. Sam Geraci will make his third start of the season on Tuesday. He went eight innings and allowed just two runs (one earned) on six hits to pick up the win over the Admirals on June 12. Statistics from his first start against Southland do not yet count because the game was suspended without completing the required five innings. The Oilmen will attempt to return to form on Tuesday after being limited to three hits and issuing a season-high 11 walks in Monday’s 7-4 loss to the Lakers. The three hits were the fewest by the Oilmen since being one-hit in a 2-0 loss to the Bobcats on June 2. Tuesday’s 1:20 game marks the first-ever weekday afternoon game at Oil City Stadium. It will be the second earliest start time in team history, eclipsed only by the 1:10 start on July 4 last season.
Inside the Oilmen
Despite a lackluster offensive performance on Monday, the Oilmen are still the only team in the league hitting above .300 (.301). Tommy Szczasny received MCL Batter of the Week recognition after hitting .500 last week, a stretch highlighted by a walk-off single against DuPage County and a go-ahead home run against the Admirals. Szczasny ranks second in the league in hitting at .426, behind only Michigan City’s Colin Willis at .444. Chase Fieldhouse’s OBP of .534 is second in the league, also behind Willis. Tyler Sroczynski has scored 25 runs this season, the most in the league. The entire top three in the MCL in runs scored will be in this game with Joliet’s Brendan Brundage (24) and Cody Gross (23) ranking second and third. Sroczynski swiped his 20th straight base without being caught dating back to last season and extended his hitting streak to 13 by recording two of his team’s three hits on Monday. The Oilmen are 3-0 all-time on June 28 and have outscored the opposition 27-2 in those three games.
Inside the Admirals
Starting pitcher Jackson Fischer has an ERA of 6.00 (8 R, 6 ER in nine innings) this season. He has issued 10 walks and struck out five. This will be Fischer’s sixth appearance, but only his second start of the year. His first start was his most recent outing, when he went 2 1/3 scoreless innings on Saturday against DuPage and gave up two hits. Fischer, who does not have any decisions, has not pitched against the Oilmen yet this season. Joliet has dropped back-to-back games after going on a seven-game winning streak to work its way to the league’s top spot. The most recent of those losses came 9-3 to the Oilmen on Sunday. The Admirals rank third in the league with a .285 team batting average. Brendan Brundage and Jordan Miller are tied for second in the MCL in RBIs with 20 apiece. The league leader is Tyler Tesmond, who has knocked in 22 for the Hounds. With their next victory, the Admirals will match their win total from all of last season. The Southland Vikings are two wins away from matching their 2015 win total.
About the Matchup
The Oilmen will look to make it two straight head-to-head wins over Joliet after they prevailed 9-3 on Sunday. The Oilmen have been victorious in four of the six meetings between the two teams so far this season. The lead the all-time series 25-7. After Tuesday, the two squads will not meet again until July 17. They have four matchups left on the calendar, two at Oil City Stadium and two at Wayne L. King Junior Field.
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