Regular season begins Thursday in Crestwood…
(Normal, IL) – Patrick Trettle hit two home runs and drove in all six Normal runs as the CornBelters defeated the Joliet Slammers by a final score of 6-2 Tuesday night.
The loss concludes the Slammers’ exhibition schedule as they finish the preseason with a 4-1 mark.
Joliet starter Jeremy Tietze was victimized twice by Trettle via the long ball. In the first inning Alvaro Ramirez singled and Patrick McKenna drew a walk. One out later Trettle hit a Tietze offering out to left field to make it 3-0 in favor of the CornBelters.
Meanwhile the Slammers struggled offensively, as their first eight hitters went down in order before Sean Estand singled with two outs in the third inning.
In the bottom of the third Tietze retired the first two batters before Steven Felix smacked a double. That brought Trettle to the plate and the slugging catcher hit the ball out to left-center field to make the score 5-0.
Reliever Geoff Brown tossed a scoreless fourth for Joliet but he too ran into Trettle in the fifth. McKenna drew a lead-off walk and stole second base. A bunt moved him to third and with the infield in Trettle singled to left to extend the Normal lead to 6-0.
The CornBelters would not score after that as the Slammers’ bullpen continued to shine. Chuck Lukanen, Chase Doremus, Brian Smith, Amalio Diaz and Jim Schult all threw scoreless frames in the 10-inning game.
The Slammers tallied their two runs in the top of the ninth. Brad Netzel singled to get things going and rookie Jimmy Waters doubled him home. One out later Hector Pellot drew a walk bringing Erik Lis to the plate. Lis hit a single that just dropped in shallow left-center field to score Waters and make the score 6-2.
But the Slammers didn’t score after that as Normal held on for the win.
Joliet opens their 2012 regular season Thursday as they head to Crestwood to take on the Windy City ThunderBolts. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. Central Time and all the action can be heard on AM 1340 WJOL and online at www.wjol.com.