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Sunday: Oilers, Monarchs play to tie

Posted: June 15, 2014 - 8:55pm

Soccer is a sport known for its ties. Baseball? Not so much, beyond that they always go to the runner.

But so far this season, the Oilers have more ties on their record (2) than there have been at the World Cup (0).

The Oilers and Lake Erie (Michigan) Monarchs played to a 2-2 tie Sunday at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai, marking the second time the squads have tied in three days.

The Oilers are now 4-1-2 overall, while the Monarchs are 2-5-3, and a very soccerlike 0-1-3 in Alaska.

Conventional knowledge holds that a tie is like kissing your sister, but Oilers head coach Kyle Richardson would much rather tie in a nonleague game than burn up pitching arms in advance of the Alaska Baseball League season.

“We’re just so thin right now,” Richardson said. “We don’t want to hurt anybody’s arm.”

Richardson said that team trainer Shelby Daly is probably the most valuable part of the team right now for the work she is doing icing down all the sore arms.

Reinforcements are on the way. Three pitchers and a field player are expected to arrive today, while Wednesday should see the arrival of a pitcher, catcher and infielder.

Richardson said starter Dallas DeVrieze knew his team had very little in the bullpen. That made DeVrieze’s start all the more encouraging.

He got through seven innings on 98 pitches, 65 for strikes. He gave up six hits and an unearned run while walking one and striking out five.

“He was awesome,” Richardson said. “It was the same thing he did last time against the Seals. He throws a lot of strikes and that’s the type of thing that wins you games.”

Richardson also liked what he saw out of his defense under pressure, as the Monarchs left seven runners in scoring position.

A good example came in the fifth, when third baseman Ethan McGill retired Grant Miller and Ryan Callahan on slow rollers to third to help strand Pat McInerney at third base.

“So far on defense, we’ve been really good,” Richardson said. “Guys have been asked to make some tough plays on the move with runners on base, and they’ve been able to do it.”

While Richardson has been satisfied with the pitching and defense, he is still waiting for the offense to come around.

After some trouble early, Monarchs starter Pat Haynes was in full control of the Oilers bats. He pitched seven innings and gave up five hits and two runs — one earned — while walking one and striking out five. After the first inning, the Oilers didn’t move a runner past first base on Haynes or reliever Zach Olsewski.

The Oilers got their lone two runs in the first inning, when Jordan Sanford walked and A.J. Hernandez singled to put runners on the corners. Sanford would score on a throwing error by the catcher, while Josh Rose, who finished 2 for 4, would single in Hernandez.

Like Richardson, Monarchs head coach John Raithel is OK with the tie score.

“This is a fun trip, but we are certainly serious about the baseball,” he said.

Raithel is using the trip to give players a chance to experiment with positions they don’t normally play. He also is trying to get all the field players an equal amount of at-bats.

That explains why J.P. Maracani, whose speed and aggressiveness on the basepaths gave the Oilers fits as he went 2 for 3 with a run, was subbed out in the seventh inning.

The Monarchs are also trying to get in as much of the Alaska experience as they can. Saturday, half the team left Kenai at 4 a.m. to go halibut fishing out of Homer in seas that Raithel said were the worst so far this season, according to the captain.

“A couple of the players and the parents weren’t feeling so well,” he said.

The other half of the team took a water taxi across Kachemak Bay and hiked to Grewingk Glacier even though some, according to Raithel, didn’t exactly have the proper footwear for a hike.

The Monarchs lost 9-4 to the Oilers on Saturday night, but Sunday night found them barbecuing 80 pounds of halibut, plus burgers and hotdogs, in a park overlooking the Kenai River.

“You can’t walk away too disappointed,” Raithel said. “The kids have gotten to do a lot of fun things that they are going to remember for the rest of their lives.”

The Oilers and Monarchs conclude the four-game series tonight at 7 p.m. at Seymour Park.

Sunday

Oilers 2, Monarchs 2

Monarchs AB R H BI Oilers AB R H BI

Mllr 2b 3 0 0 0 Yagi ss 4 0 0 0

Jhsn 2b 2 0 0 0 Snfrd lf 3 1 0 0

Mrcni cf 3 1 2 0 Hrndz 2b 4 1 1 0

Rwbtm cf 2 0 0 0 Pske 1b 4 0 1 0

Clhn lf 4 1 1 0 Mnz c 3 0 0 0

Stytn dh 3 0 0 0 Rose rf 4 0 2 1

Vsy dh 0 0 0 0 McGl 3b 3 0 0 0

Hfy 3b 4 0 1 1 Sdln cf 3 0 1 0

Rmr c 3 0 1 1 Devrz p 3 0 0 0

Flkns ss 2 0 0 0 Nsslt p 0 0 0 0

Fla ss 2 0 1 0 ---- -- -- -- --

Dch rf 4 0 2 0 ---- -- -- -- --

McIy 1b 3 0 1 0 ---- -- -- -- --

Totals 35 2 9 2 Totals 31 2 5 1

Lake Erie 000 100 010 —2

Peninsula 200 000 000 —2

2B – Reimer. S — McInerney. SB — Maracani 2, McInerney. E — Reimer, DeVrieze, McGill. LOB — Monarch 9, Oilers 4.

IP H R ER BB SO

Monarchs

Haynes 7 5 2 1 1 5

Olsewski 2 0 0 0 0 0

Oilers

DeVrieze 7 6 1 0 1 5

McGill 1 2 1 1 0 0

Nesselt 1 1 0 0 0 0

HP — by Haynes (Munoz); by McGill (Veasey).

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