North Little Rock, AR - The Springfield Cardinals struck for two runs in the top of the 10th, taking the 3-1 extra-innings win against the Arkansas Travelers before 4,698 fans at Dickey-Stephens Park on Sunday afternoon. Springfield takes their second straight series win as well, 3-games-to-1.
The Travelers (7-9) cracked the scoreless tie with a tally in the bottom of the third against RHP Richard Castillo. CF Travis Witherspoon started the stanza with a double, before moving to third on a sacrifice bunt. SS Rolando Gomez then connected with an RBI single to plate Witherspoon for the 1-0 lead.
The Cardinals (8-8) battled back in the top of the fifth. RF Adam Melker began the frame with a double placed just inside the left field line. 2B Starlin Rodriguez sacrificed himself with a bunt to advance Melker to third, and then SS Vance Albitz skied an RBI sacrifice fly to left field, bringing Melker home to tie it, 1-1.
The tie remained intact throughout the remainder of the regulation frames, forcing the Cardinals first extra-innings contest of the campaign. Springfield wasted little time pulling in front, tallying two runs in the top of the 10th. With the bases loaded and no outs, CF Tommy Pham cued an RBI single just inside the foul line right behind first base, bringing Rodriguez home from third. DH Ruben Gotay followed with an RBI ground out to first base, plating 3B Neal Pritchard from third for the 3-1 lead.
After three scoreless relief innings from RHP Deryk Hooker (W, 1-0), RHP Michael Blazek (S, 3) took over for the bottom of the 10th. The Cardinals closer quickly slammed the door on the Travelers with a 1-2-3 frame, closing the 3-1 win for Springfield in 10 innings.
Springfield returns to Hammons Field this Monday at 7:09 p.m. to start an eight-game homestand, with the first four against the Northwest Arkansas Naturals and the latter four against the Arkansas Travelers.The homestand will feature the 2012 Texas League Championship Replica Ring Giveaway (2,500) on Thurs., April 25, AM Pyrotechnics Friday Night Fireworks featuring 60's British Rock-N-Roll on Fri., April 26, the Price Cutter and Bar-S Texas League Championship Jersey T-Shirt Giveaway (2,500) on Sat., April 27, the Empire Bank Green Cap Giveaway (2,500) on Sun., April 28