Midwest League: Cougars stymied by Quad Cities
By Paul Johnson For Sun-Times Media July 6, 2013 10:10PM
QUAD CITIES 5, COUGARS 0
Recap: Cougars starter Jose Rosario allowed five runs in five innings and Quad Cities pitcher Mike Hauschild scattered three hits over seven dominant innings to give the River Bandits the win.
Cougars record: 34-48 overall, 4-12 second half
Up next: Quad Cities (Colton Cain 3-5) at Cougars (Tayler Scott 4-3), 1 p.m. Saturday, WBIG-AM (1280), (kccougars.com)
Updated: July 8, 2013 10:34AM
For two games, the Kane County Cougars’ sluggish offense woke up for 15 runs and a pair of wins over the team that has vexed them all season, Quad Cities.
But Saturday, River Bandits pitcher Mike Hauschild and two relievers shut out the Cougars 5-0, allowing only three hits.
Hauschild (6-1) was dominant in his seven innings, allowing three hits and walking none while striking out two. Daniel Minor and Chia-Jen Lo combined for five strikeouts in their two innings of relief.
“He just kept the ball down and away and mixed his pitches,” Cougars manager Mark Johnson said of Hauschild. “We just kind of hit the ball right at guys. It’s not like we smoked the ball by any means, but a lot of early contact, a lot of rollovers. A lot of at-bats where you go, ‘Golly, how did I get out on that?’ One of those nights. We didn’t make an adjustment as a group.”
Cougars starter Jose Rosario (0-5) struggled all night and put the Cougars (34-48 overall, 4-12 second half) in an early hole. The River Bandits (49-36 overall, 11-5 second half) cashed in a two-out walk with a Jobduan Morales RBI double in the second. Jordan Scott then doubled in Teoscar Hernandez and scored on a throwing error in the third to make it 3-0. Single runs in the fourth and fifth chased Rosario.
“He couldn’t find the zone at all,” Johnson said. “He just missed with all of his pitches and pitched from behind all night, which is not easy to do. Hard to come back and get people out when you’re (down) 1-0 and 2-0.”
The Cougars received a scare in the fourth inning when star center fielder Albert Almora went down in between first and second as Dan Vogelbach grounded into a double play. He went down clutching his right leg before leaving on his own power. Almora went out to his position in the fifth and Dan Gulbransen greeted him immediately with a fly ball over his head that turned out to be a triple.
The 2012 first-round pick of the Cubs stayed in for the rest of the inning but was eventually replaced by Oliver Zapata. The good news is that Almora is not suffering from a leg injury. Johnson said Almora is dealing with a case of hemorrhoids.
“I think when he slid into second he aggravated it,” Johnson said. “I haven’t talked to him or (athletic trainer Shane Nelson) yet. We’ll see how it goes. Obviously it was killing him. I took him out. You can’t put him out there when he can’t go after the ball.”
On the bright side, Sheldon McDonald threw three scoreless innings in relief for the Cougars. He has not allowed an earned run in 10 innings since arriving with the Cougars.
“Sheldon is just a pro’s pro,” Johnson said. “He goes about his business the right way. He throws strikes, he holds runners. He can do a lot of different things in multiple roles. He’s nice to have on the staff for sure.”