NEWARK BEARS: The Final Five Games Are At Hand
The Quebec Capitales have clinched the CanAm League's division title. The New Jersey Jackals have locked up the second playoff spot. For the Newark Bears, the final five games of their regular season are at hand.
Wednesday night was an off day for the club. Tuesday evening, Newark made a very short trip up the road for what is effectively their last road trip of the season against the New Jersey Jackals. The series resumes Thursday. After concluding this series Friday evening, the Bears will host the Worcester Tornadoes to finish out the season.
The Bears are currently 33-62, and have opened up a six game lead over Worcester. Therefore Newark is assured of not finishing in last place. That distinction will fall on the Tornadoes; as if they didn't have enough troubles already.
Tuesday's game was a great back and forth battle. Both starting pitchers got bombed. Newark's Julian Sampson faced off against Jackal's starter, Dustin Birosak. Sampson only lasted 4.1 innings. He surrendered nine runs; eight earned; and allowed eleven hits. He also walked three. Sampson managed to strikeout two batters before getting yanked. Birosak line was equally ugly. In 5.1 innings, he allowed ten hits, and eight earned runs. He walked two and struck out five.
New Jersey scored three times in the first, and picked up another run in the second, putting Newark down 4-0 early. D'Angelo Jimenez' RBI single got Newark on the board in the third. In the fourth, Juan Martinez crushed his seventh home run of the season to make it a 4-2 game. New Jersey then lowered the hammer in the fifth inning. Four hits, two errors, and five runs later, the Jackals held a 9-2 lead.
In their very next at-bat, the Newark Bears clawed back and plated seven runs to achieve a 9-9 tie. Five Newark hits and an error later, and there was a brand new ball game to play with three more innings to go. It was the Bears who would pull ahead. They scored a run in the eighth and another in the ninth to complete an 11-9 win.
Pitching in the seventh and eighth inning, Anthony Pluta gets credit for his fourth relief win this season. And winding up a rather stellar season, closer Jorge Vasquez notched his twenty-first save of the season. He has seventy strikeouts in 42.1 innings pitched.
New Jersey Jackals
Yogi Berra Stadium