Wisconsin Rapids, WI – August 1, 2012 – The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (7-18, 23-36 overall) lost the season-series finale to the Eau Claire Express (11-14, 22-37 overall) Wednesday night. Exploding for 14 runs, the Express jumped all over Rafters pitching and ran away with a 14-7 victory at Witter Field.
The Rafters never led in the game, as the Express jumped all over Cam Seidl (JR, UW-Stevens Point), who made a spot start for Wisconsin Rapids. In his first start since June, Seidl found the strike zone early and often, but the Express tagged him for multiple hits in each inning he pitched. In the fourth, he was lifted after six of the first seven batters reached. In 3.1 innings, the right-hander allowed seven runs on 11 hits. He walked only one and didn't record a strikeout.
Down 10-3 in the sixth, the Rafters finally hit Express starter Sean Renzi hard. A streak of five consecutive runners reached to help Wisconsin Rapids to three runs, pulling them within four at 10-6. Renzi, who has had issues with command all year walked four and hit a batter in six innings, tossing 109 pitches. He allowed six runs, four earned, but left with a 10-6 lead.
The game remained within striking distance for Wisconsin Rapids until the ninth. In an 11-7 contest, Ryan Shober clubbed a three-run home run off of newly added reliever JP Feyereisen (FR, UW-Stevens Point), a collegiate teammate of Seidl. All three of Shober's home runs this season have come off of Wisconsin Rapids' pitching.
With a 14-7 lead, Josh Scheffert fired his second consecutive scoreless frame, striking out the side in the ninth to finish off the Rafters and pick up the first series sweep of the season for Eau Claire.
Renzi (4-2) snagged the victory while Seidl (0-3) took the loss. The loss is the Rafters' fifth straight. They have now lost nine of ten, the worst stretch of ten games for Wisconsin Rapids this season. They lose the season series to Eau Claire with a record of 4-6.
The final eleven games of the season begin tomorrow. Battle Creek comes to town, the Rafters' opponent in six of the final eleven games this season. Ben Heller (4-3, 4.50 ERA) toes the rubber for Wisconsin Rapids at Witter Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm.
The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters are members of the 16-team summer collegiate Northwoods League. The Rafters will play a 70 game schedule with 35 home games in 2012. All games are broadcast on AM 1320 WFHR or at www.WFHR.com with live video feed from the home team at NorthwoodsLeague.tv. Available quantities of all promotional giveaways will vary from event to event and will be available on a first come, first serve basis. The best way to guarantee giveaway items is to purchase a 9-Game Package by calling the Rafters ticket office at 715-424-5400. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 9am-5pm. For more information, visit www.raftersbaseball.com
Courtesy: Rafters Sports Information