TRAVERSE CITY — Evidently, you don't take a hit away from Javier Herrera.
The Southern Illinois center fielder gets mad.
Herrera — who had a first-inning at-bat ruled a hit, and then later changed to an error — blasted a solo home run in the fourth inning Wednesday at Wuerfel Park that proved to be all that pitcher David Harden would need as Southern Illinois won the opening game of a best-of-five playoff series 1-0.
"They were giving him a hard time," Harden said of his teammates in the dugout. "So they saw it, and he did what he did, didn't he?"
Herrera blasted a solo shot to lead off the fourth that landed next to the flag pole. It was the first hit off TC starter Reid Kelly — until Herrera's first-inning at-bat was eventually changed for a second time, back to a single. It also ended up as the only offense of the entire night, as Kelly and Harden engaged in a pitcher's duel for seven-plus innings.
Harden struck out five and surrendered seven hits and no walks in eight frames, while Kelly gave up just four hits and one walk in 7.1 innings, striking out seven.
"Reid is always going to give you his best," TC right fielder Sean Gusrang said. "He's our go-to guys. He's a great pitcher and throws a lot of strikes. He threw a helluva game and kept them off balance and only gave up one run. That's all you can ask from your starter. With our offense, you figure we'll score more than one, but tonight just wasn't our night."
The Beach Bums had eight hits — half of those by Kyle Colligan — to only four by Southern Illinois.
"Colligan was 4 for 4 with three doubles, but we just couldn't get that timely hit we needed," Gusrang said. "We had a bunch of hits — eight or nine — but we couldn't get that timely one when guys were in scoring position."
Traverse City — which had come in with a 25-7 mark in series-opening games, 37-14 at home and 11-3 on Wednesdays this campaign — dropped to 9-22 this season when scoring three or fewer runs.
The Beach Bums threatened in the seventh, as Colligan doubled up the third base line and Gusrang singled with one out. Colligan tried to come home on Marcus Nidiffer's hit to third, and was gunned down at the plate by Carlos Mendez.
The Miners almost added to their lead in the eighth, as Chris Anderson led off with a double and was bunted over to third, ending Kelly's night. Nick Capito came on to strike out Cory Harrilchak and get Jake Kaase to pop up to end the inning.
Matt Miller came on for the ninth, striking out two in a 1-2-3 inning to keep the Bums only a run down going into their last at-bat.
Chase Burch tagged a 2-2 pitch to straight-away center, but Alvaro Ramirez was able to track it down at the warning track.
The previous inning, Still belted one that was a no-doubter, but it curled around the foul pole and landed behind the Miners' bullpen.
"I was waving that thing foul," Harden said. "I knew it was over the wall as soon as he hit it. Thank goodness it kept going."
Colligan had his fourth hit of the game in the ninth, doubling with two outs. Gusrang worked a full count, before striking out looking.
"I thought I should have been protecting there," Gusrang said. "But he threw a little back door slider there that he hadn't thrown all at-bat. I thought he was going to come hard with his best — which is his fastball. It caught me off-side a bit. I thought it was outside a bit. Perry (Costello) is a good umpire. I should have been protecting. That's on me."
In the third, Still and Heere had back-to-back singles, with league MVP Jose Vargas up to bat, but Harden coaxed a double play ball out of the 100-RBI third baseman.
"My heart was beating a little faster than normal," Harden said.
Jacob Clem (7-4, 3.09) takes the mound for Traverse City in tonight's Game 2, opposed by the Miners' Daniel Calhoun (7-4, 2.52).
TRAVERSE CITY — Evidently, you don't take a hit away from Javier Herrera.
Bums ace hurler headed closer to home
A desire to play close to home led to a trade announced Tuesday that sent Traverse City ace pitcher Scott Dunn to the Washington Wild Things for All-Star infielder Jovan Rosa and a first round draft pick.Continued ...
Beach Bums trade Burch to RedHawks
TRAVERSE CITY -- A longtime fixture in the heart of the Traverse City Beach Bums lineup is gone. The Beach Bums traded first baseman Chase Burch to the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks of the American Association for a player to be named later and other consiContinued ...
Bums' Langbehn: Season was a success
If it were up to Traverse City Beach Bums manager Gregg Langbehn, his team would still be fighting for a Frontier League championship. But even after a Divisional Series loss to Lake Erie, Langbehn was happy with the way his team performed this year.Continued ...
Beach Bums season ends with rain-delayed loss
A crushing Game 5 loss in Friday’s early hours ended the Traverse City Beach Bums’ season.Continued ...
Game 5 of Bums' series delayed by rain
The fifth and deciding game of the Frontier League Divisional Series between Traverse City and Lake Erie was delayed by rain on Thursday with the Beach Bums leading 4-2 in the seventh inning.Continued ...
Crushers force Game 5, stun Beach Bums late
The Traverse City Beach Bums were seven outs away from their second-ever trip to the Frontier League Championship Series on Wednesday.Continued ...
- Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Video: Lake Erie 13, Beach Bums 3
Traverse City Beach Bums' first baseman Chase Burch shares his thoughts on tonight's 13-3 loss to Lake Erie. The Frontier League Divisional Series is now tied at 2-2.Continued ...
Bums take 2-1 series lead
Forget about home plate or third base, even second base seemed like a mirage to the Lake Erie Crushers on Tuesday night.Continued ...
- Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Video: TC Beach Bums vs. Lake Erie
Watch interviews with Traverse City's starting pitcher Mike Devine and Manager Gregg Langbehn after the Bums' 5-0 win over Lake Erie, which gave Traverse City a 2-1 lead in its playoff series with the Crushers.Continued ...
- Monday, September 9, 2013
Lake Erie ties series with Bums
Traverse City’s Frontier League playoff series will be coming back to town all knotted up at a game apiece.Continued ...
- Sunday, September 8, 2013
Bums take Game 1 from Crushers
Scott Dunn and Matt Miller combined to shut out the Lake Erie Crushers as the Traverse City Beach Bums won 8-0 to win Game 1 of their Frontier League playoff series.Continued ...
- Saturday, September 7, 2013
Beach Bums open playoff series tonight
The second season begins tonight for the Traverse City Beach Bums.Continued ...
- Friday, September 6, 2013
Bums beat Lake Erie to snap streak
Traverse City snapped an 11-game road losing streak on Thursday, ending the regular season with a 2-0 win over Lake Erie.Continued ...
- Thursday, September 5, 2013
Crushers clinch East championship
Lake Erie clinched the East Division championship with a 5-1 win Wednesday over the Traverse City Beach Bums.Continued ...
- Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Bums lose, clinch playoff spot
AVON, Ohio — Lake Erie's Anderson Hidalgo singled in Craig Hertler with one out in the 12th inning as the Crushers handed Traverse City a 3-2 loss Tuesday in the opening game of a series to decide the Frontier League's East Division. Even with that lContinued ...
- Monday, September 2, 2013
Gusrang wins game for Bums
Sean Gusrang’s two-out, game-wining RBI single in the 10th inning Sunday night set the stage for what promises to be an intriguing end to the Frontier League’s regular season.Continued ...
- Sunday, September 1, 2013
Bums no-hit by Joliet, lose 4-1
Six Joliet pitchers combined on a no-hitter Saturday night as the Slammers beat the Traverse City Beach Bums 4-1 in 10 innings.Continued ...
- Saturday, August 31, 2013
Beach Bums beat Joliet Slammers
Scott Woodward homered and drove in two runs to help the Traverse City Beach Bums stay atop the Frontier League’s East Division.Continued ...
- Friday, August 30, 2013
Burch hits walk-off grand slam in 11th
In the 11th inning, the Washington Wild Things walked Jose Vargas to load the bases and get to Chase Burch.Continued ...
- Monday, August 26, 2013
Beach Bums finish sweep of Normal
Remarkably, it only took a few days for Traverse City to make its recent six-game skid seem like a distant memory.Continued ...
- Sunday, August 25, 2013
Beach Bums beat Normal
The rollercoaster ride of the Traverse City Beach Bums continued Saturday as the Bums topped Noral 5-2 at Wuerfel Park for their second straight win.Continued ...
- Friday, August 23, 2013
Beach Bums drop sixth straight game
Traverse City dropped its sixth straight game on Thursday as River City completed a three-game sweep of the Beach Bums, 8-5.Continued ...
- Thursday, August 22, 2013
Beach Bums let lead slip away
River City plated six runs in the sixth inning to edge the slumping Beach Bums 6-5 in a Frontier League clash here.Continued ...
- Wednesday, August 21, 2013
River City tops Bums, 8-5
River City exploded for five runs in the bottom of the seventh for a come-from-behind 8-5 Frontier League win over the Beach Bums, who have now dropped seven road games in a row.Continued ...
- Monday, August 19, 2013
Boomers sweep Beach Bums with 5-3 win
Traverse City and Schaumburg came into their three-game series each atop their division. Not any more.Continued ...
- Bums ace hurler headed closer to home