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Pirates’ season ends; 7-2 loss to Bemidji in MN tournament

September 3, 2017
Robert Brewer - Register Staff Writer , Faribault County Register

After an opening round victory last weekend in Norwood, the Blue Earth Pirates (20-10) bowed out of the 2017 Minnesota State Class 'C' Amateur Baseball Tournament on Aug. 27.

Traveling to Hamburg for a date with the Bemidji Blue Ox (21-7), Blue Earth's offense mustered only two runs on two hits in their second round showdown. Meanwhile, Bemidji was able to post seven runs on 11 hits in a one-sided affair.

Playing as the home team, Bemidji posted a pair of runs in the first, third, and seventh innings. First baseman Bazil Zuehlke drew first blood with his two-run single in the first inning. Left fielder Collin Rutledge added a two-run single of his own in the third to give Bemidji a comfortable 4-0 lead.

Coming off of a masterful performance in his last start against Fort Ripley, Pirates manager and pitcher Lee Hodges was feeling extremely confident as he took the hill once again for Blue Earth. Unfortunately, Hodges was charged with five earned runs in seven innings of work against Bemidji. One of these runs came by way of the long ball as Hodges was victimized by Blue Ox center fielder Cody Rutledge in the fifth inning.

Numerous missed scoring opportunities added to Blue Earth's frustration on Sunday. A total of nine base on balls were issued to Pirates batters throughout the afternoon. Catcher Bobby Olson also reached base after being hit by a pitch in the sixth inning.

Despite all of these extra baserunners, timely hitting eluded the boys from Blue Earth. The Pirates managed to load the bases in the fifth inning and only came away with a single run in the frame.

In addition to their hitting and pitching difficulties, three Blue Earth errors in the ballgame contributed to the loss.



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