Springfield, MO- Four runs in the 7th inning for Springfield highlighted by a two-run double by Oscar Taveras proved to be the difference as the Cardinals upend NW Arkansas 6-3.
Springfield sent lefty Anthony Ferrara to the hill in his AA debut against righty Yordano Ventura of the Naturals
NW Arkansas got on the board first in the second inning as Ferrara allowed a single, a double and a walk with one out to load the bases before Yem Prades lifted a sacrifice fly to left field to score the game's first run.
The Naturals got another run in the third when Ferrara walked Paulo Orlando with two outs and Mario Lisson reached on an infield single that Orlando came all the way home on a throwing error by Jermaine Curtis to take a 2-0 advantage. Ferrara exited after 2.2 innings of work allowing two runs, one earned, on three hits with four strikeouts.
In the 4th, Kevin Thomas was on the hill in relief and allowed a lead-off solo homer to Alex McClure to increase the Naturals lead to 3-0.
The Cardinals offense did not have a hit in the game until the 6th inning when Jermaine Curtis singled to right field with one out. After a walk and a passed ball put runners at second and third, Jamie Romak bounced out to second base to score Curtis to get the Cardinals within two, 3-1.
Former Missouri State Bear Buddy Baumann pitched in the bottom of the 7th for the Naturals and walked three and allowed a hit to bring Springfield within one, 3-2, still with nobody out. Jon Keck came in relief and allowed a sacrifice fly to Kolten Wong to tie the game 3-3. After Jermaine Curtis singled to load the bases again, Oscar Taveras doubled off the center field wall to plate two more runs to give the Cardinals their first lead 5-3.
Springfield added one more for good measure in the 8th on a bases loaded walk issued to Kolten Wong to make it 6-3.
Jorge Rondon threw a scoreless 8th and Keith Butler walked a pair and allowed a single in the 9th, but nitched his 20th save with a scoreless inning. Kevin Thomas excelled out of the bullpen with four and a third innings allowing just a run on three hits with four strikeouts to earn his 4th win of the season.
Springfield will continue their four-game set with the NW Arkansas at 6:08pm. The Cardinals will have Seth Maness on the mound against Ryan Dennick of the Naturals.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun