WASHINGTON, PA. – The Gateway Grizzlies faltered on the mound early on Wednesday night against the Washington Wild Things, giving up seven walks and one hit batter in the first three frames, leading to the majority of the five runs they allowed in the contest, and costing them the middle game of the series by a final score of 5-3 at Wild Things Park despite yeoman’s work out of the bullpen by Alvery De Los Santos.

Two leadoff walks began the bottom of the first inning for Teague Conrad (3-1), and three batters later, Tommy Caufield’s sacrifice fly to left field made it 1-0 Washington. In the second, Conrad hit Robert Chayka with a pitch to lead off, and with two runners on base later in the frame got the second out on a pop-up to third. But Conrad then lost the strike zone again, walking Alex Ovalles and then Andrew Czech to force in a run and make it 2-0. Wagner Lagrange followed with a two-run single on a 2-2 count to make the score 4-0.

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Gateway was able to respond in the top of the third against Aaron Forrest (1-0), as Cole Brannen and Kyle Gaedele drew back-to-back leadoff walks before Tate Wargo hit an RBI single to left field to cut the Washington lead to 4-1. Later in the inning, with the bases loaded and one out, Peter Zimmermann made it 4-2 on a sacrifice fly to center field.

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In the third inning, however, Nathanial Tate issued three more walks before leaving the game with an injury, with a passed ball in the frame making the score 5-2. De Los Santos then came on and got out of trouble, and the right-hander would finish off the game for the Grizzlies, scattering three singles and just one walk of his own while striking out eight over five and one-third innings to keep Gateway close.

Offensively, the Grizzlies got a two-out RBI double by Gabe Holt in the top of the fifth inning, scoring Abdiel Diaz from first base and drawing within 5-3, but struggled the rest of the way, recording just one baserunner in the last four innings against the Washington bullpen in suffering another close loss, the club’s fourth straight in middle games of series.

The Grizzlies will look to bounce back in a gigantic rubber game of the three-game series on Thursday night, June 20, at 6:05 p.m. CT at Wild Things Park.

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