While the number of runs was gaudy, and the Lincoln Cardinals made solid contact with Green Ridge’s offerings, the Tigers simply ran out of experienced pitchers Monday in a 27-0 home loss.
It is Lincoln’s 11th straight victory.
Mason Sanders launched a 3-run homer that cleared the left field fence in the third inning to make it 6-0. The Cardinals led 8-0 after two innings and chased Green Ridge starter Colton Wiley before a 19-run sixth inning. Lincoln drew walks and turned the base paths into a carousel against the Tigers’ bullpen.
Green Ridge head coach Jason Cannon said he wanted to conserve what pitching resources his 12-man roster had.
“We had a few more arms,” Cannon said. “But we play tomorrow, and the conference tournament begins Saturday … The arms that we have are precious.”
Lincoln, on the other hand, has the luxury of one of the deeper rotations in the conference.
Corbin Reese started for the Cardinals and cruised through five scoreless innings to earn the win in Lincoln’s fifth shutout of the season. He started in place of Connor Spunaugle, who has a 2.17 ERA and 17 strikeouts in 19.1 innings.
Corbin Mergen held Cole Camp to two runs on four hits Friday in a 7-2 victory. He owns a 0.78 ERA with 34 strikeouts in 27 innings this season.
Reese, who had walked five batters in 25 innings going into Monday’s game, said his fastball was effective against the Tigers.
“Fastball felt good,” Reese said. “It had a lot of movement. They weren’t catching up on it so I kept pounding it inside.”
Mergen echoed Reese’s fastball-first sentiment, and said head coach Will Lynde and he work on mechanics and trusting the defense.
“(Lynde) wants us to maintain fastball dominance,” Mergen said. “If that works, then we got the defense behind us.”
Lynde said he recognizes the advantage a deep rotation is at the Class 2 level.
“Really, we’ve got seven kids that can throw strikes,” Lynde said. “That is a very big luxury.”
Lincoln hosts Windsor tomorrow at 5 p.m. Green Ridge travels to La Monte for a 5 p.m. start.
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2