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Mudcats Give Up Lead Late, Lose To St. Joseph On the Road

The Chillicothe Mudcats went on the road to face the St. Joseph Mustangs on Wednesday night, and after having a five run lead halfway through, St. Joseph came all the way back to win the game, 6-5.


The Mustangs avoided back-to-back defeats in the process, while also snapping Chillicothe’s recent three game win streak. It also means that St. Joseph’s record against the Mudcats this season remains perfect.


The Mudcats got out on the front foot, as they scored one run each in the first and third innings. Julio Guerrero reached in the first inning on an infield single, and an error by St. Joseph moved Guerrero to third base. He later scored in the inning on a sacrifice fly from Hunter Shoulta, which made it 1-0.


In the third inning, Guerrero would do the exact same thing, reaching first base on an infield single, and reached third on a single from Drew Sanidad. Shoulta stepped up to the plate and hit another sacrifice fly, which scored Guerrero for the second time on the night, and made it 2-0.


The Mudcats then created a two out rally in the top of the fourth, and with runners at the corners, Guerrero had what looked to be one of the biggest hits of the season. Guerrero belted an opposite field, three run home run to give the Mudcats a 5-0 lead, his second home run at Phil Welch Stadium this season.


In addition, Jordan Marlott, who made his third start for Chillicothe against St. Joseph this season, pitched five strong innings, allowing just one run, which came in the bottom of the fifth. That meant at the halfway point of the game, the Mudcats had the lead, 5-0.


That’s when the Mustangs started to make a slow and steady comeback that ultimately led them to victory. After getting on the board in the fifth, they scored two runs, one unearned, in the bottom of the sixth, and scored another unearned run in the seventh, making the score 5-4.


However, in those innings, it could have been worse, as the Mustangs stranded the bases loaded in the bottom of the sixth, and left two runners on in the seventh. Mudcats’ reliever Steven Escarcega pitched out of jams in both innings, and the Mudcats defense made some terrific run-saving plays.


Then, in the eighth inning, Darius Freeman hit an RBI triple that brought in the tying run for the Mustangs. He would score immediately after as the next hitter, Dom Felix, sent an RBI single up the middle to make the score 6-5. That would be all the Mustangs needed on the night, as their closer, Jaren Guck shut the door by retiring six of the seven batters he faced in the eighth and ninth innings.


With the loss, the Mudcats drop to 12-17 overall this season, and 10-17 in MINK League play. In the regular season, they go 0-3 at Phil Welch Stadium against the Mustangs, losing all three games by a combined five runs. Chillicothe will face St. Joseph one final time this season in regular season play, when they face off on Wednesday, July 17, at Shaffer Park in the Mudcats’ final game at home.


The Mudcats will take the Fourth of July off, but have some important games ahead, as they will travel to the state of Iowa for three games over the space of two days. The first game of that stretch comes on Friday night, when the Mudcats face off for one final time in this regular season against the Carroll Merchants. If they beat the Merchants, they will be tied for fifth place in the MINK League standings with Carroll, and beat them for a sixth time this season.


The game against the Merchants will begin at 6:30. As the Mudcats turn to the final stretch of the season, make sure to tune into every single remaining game this season on KCHI and on