06/27/2015 10:18 AM -
June 27, 2015 • 7:10 p.m. • Whiting, Ind.
Internet Broadcast: nwioilmen.com
NWI’s Keith Mahler (Heartland / Cumberland / Highland, Ind.) vs. Joliet’s Sean Renzi (Central Michigan / Plainfield, Ill.)
The Northwest Indiana Oilmen have won back-to-back games to start the homestand and hold a 5-1 record in games played at Oil City Stadium this season. Christian Howell became the first Oilmen starter this year to work into the eighth inning on Thursday night, tossing 7 2/3 dazzling frames with only one run (earned) allowed. The Oilmen prevailed 12-3, defeating Michigan City for the first time this season. Six different Oilmen had multiple hits in Northwest Indiana’s most lopsided win since July 20, 2014, an 11-2 triumph over the Zephyrs. The Oilmen picked up the 100th victory in team history on Thursday night. The 2012 Midwest Collegiate League champion Oilmen will be recognized before Saturday’s game as part of Whiting’s Day of Champions. Players from the team and former Oilmen manager Justin Huisman will be in attendance.
Inside the Oilmen
After being scratched from Wednesday’s scheduled start with an eye infection and pushed back again by Friday’s rainout, Keith Mahler is expected to take the hill on Saturday night. Mahler, the only second-year Oilmen pitcher, holds a 4.50 ERA in three starts. His most recent outing came on June 18, when he yielded two runs on four hits over five innings and had no decision in a 4-3 loss to DuPage County. Mahler faced the Snipes on June 7, picking up the win despite allowing four runs on seven hits over four innings in a rain-shortened 7-4 win for the Oilmen. Josh Turnock picked up his third three-hit game of the season on Tuesday night, becoming the first Oilmen with three three-hit days this season. Only Tyler Sroczynski and Stefano Belmonte join Turnock with more than one three-hit performance.
Inside the Admirals
The Admirals go with Central Michigan right-hander Sean Renzi on Saturday night in Whiting. He made his Joliet debut on June 20 at DuPage, getting the win with six innings of one-run ball. Renzi tossed eight innings out of the Chippewa bullpen as a junior this spring. Micah Coffey is one of Joliet’s leading hitters at .337, but he’s 0-for his last seven including a hitless performance against the Oilmen on Wednesday.
About the Matchup
The Oilmen have won three of the first four meetings with the Admirals this season. They lead the all-time series 19-4. The most recent meeting took place on Wednesday night at Oil City Stadium, as Northwest Indiana captured a dramatic 1-0 victory behind a lights out pitching performance by Jimmy Skiff.
Around the MCL
The Oilmen now sit in a first-place tie with DuPage County in the Midwest Collegiate League, technically percentage points ahead of the Hounds. The Snipes join the Hounds and Oilmen as the three MCL teams with winning records. Both scheduled MCL games were washed out on Friday night, including the Oilmen and the Snipes. The Hounds face Michigan City on Saturday afternoon.
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