T.J. House leads Mahoning Valley Scrappers to shutout win
NILES, Ohio – Not only did the crowd get a taste of victory as the Mahoning Valley Scrappers beat the Connecticut Tigers, but they also got to watch Cleveland Indians’ pitcher T.J. House start the game.
The Scrappers walked off the field after besting the Tigers, 4-0.
Mahoning Valley went took the Tigers out 1-2-3 in the first inning to start the game off an a positive note defensively.
Stepping in for House at the top of the sixth was Luis DeJesus. After an easy three outs the Scrappers went up to bat in a scoreless game. Greg Allen picked up a single before teammateSteven Patterson stepped up and hit a fly ball out over the right fielder’s head for a double and advanced Allen to third. Bradley Zimmer followed up with a hit to bring in the run. Patterson added a second run later in the inning.
Showing off his rocket of an arm, catcher Francisco Mejia saw the Tigers runner on first lead off too much for his liking and he threw down to first and got the second out needed at the top of the seventh.
Mahoning Valley made its lead 3-0 after a pass ball form the tigers let in a run.
Jose Zapata stepped up to the mound for DeJesus as a relief at the top of the eighth. Three fast outs later and the Scrappers were once again up to bat.
Clearing the infield with a ground ball, Patterson got a single. That eventually led to the final run of the game off of a Connecticut error.
Ted Kubiak, the Scrappers’ manager, gleamed as he spoke about his bullpen pitchers.
"Louie did a good job and Zapata did his job,” he said. “It was one of those nights where it all came together for us".
House seemed to spark the team, and inspired his the Scrappers with his big-league experience.
"I would only hope so,” he said. “I definitely feel like if I can give off good energy then it's going to translate to the guys behind me."
House said helping the team to a win gave him a sense of accomplishment.
"I think that's the biggest key,” he said. “Just making sure that they know that you want to win.”
The Scrappers are set to play the Connecticut Tigers on Thursday at the Eastwood Field in Niles, Ohio.