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Outlaws Run-Rule Mudcats Behind Protaskey's Seven-RBI night

June 17, 2021

By Brennan Mense


JOPLIN, MO—Calen Protaskey had four hits, a homer, and drove in seven runs, Ethan Ellis homered and scored four times, and the Joplin Outlaws snapped a string of three losses in four games with a 16-6, seven-inning win over the Chillicothe Mudcats on Thursday night at Joe Becker Stadium.

Joplin (6-5) matched their season high for runs and their 17 hits was one off their top figure for the year. Chillicothe (4-7) dropped their fourth-straight game and allowed double-digit runs for the fifth time this year.

The contest started ominously for Joplin as Steen Lane retired the first two batters, but the next four batters reached, with RBI singles from Greyson Barrett and Wes Brandsgaard staking the Mudcats to a 2-0 lead.

However, the Outlaws responded by sending ten men to the plate in the first. Cade Lott grounded an RBI single, then Lawson Faria drew a bases-loaded walk to tie the game. With two outs, Protaskey drove in his first two runs with a single to center to give Joplin a 4-2 advantage. The five-run frame was capped by a Jeb Jenkins RBI single.

The Outlaws extended the lead in the second as a double play and Brett Weimers' RBI double brought home another run. An inning later, Protaskey came home all the way from first on a double from Jeb Jenkins to stretch the lead to 8-2.

Lane gave way to Cale McAllister in the fourth, who wobbled out of the gate with two walks and a hit batter. After a double play brought home a run, a throwing error from Weimers cut the Joplin lead to 8-4.

However, that was as close as the Mudcats got, as Joplin roared back for three in the bottom of the fourth. Lott scored on a wild pitch, then Prolaskey unloaded on a pitch to right-center, clearing the terrace and the low wall for a two-run homer, his second of the season.

Up 11-4 going into the fifth, the Outlaws were not done piling on. Working against the third Chillicothe pitcher of the night, Ethan Ellis lined a two-run homer that easily cleared the left field wall, his first of the season.

The rally didn't end there as Weimers and Faria walked and both advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch. Protaskey followed with his third two-run hit of the night, a bloop single that extended the lead to 15-4.

The Mudcats made one last push against McAllister in the sixth, scoring two runs. Zack Stewart and Payton Allen led off with a single and double, putting runners at second and third. Both came around to score on successive sacrifice flies, which cut the lead to nine runs.

The two-run sixth for Chillicothe staved off the mercy rule momentarily as Joplin failed to score in the sixth, but in the seventh, the Outlaws put two in scoring position with nobody out. Following a pitching change, two hit batters brought home the final run, with Protaskey taking a pitch off the left shoulder for the deciding tally, his seventh RBI of the night.

Lane (1-0) earned the win, allowing two runs on three hits with two walks and five strikeouts over 3.0 innings. McAllister allowed four runs (three earned) on three hits, two walks, and a strikeout in 3.0 innings. Jack O'Brien threw a perfect seventh with two strikeouts.

The Outlaws return to action Friday night with the second game against Chillicothe at Joe Becker Stadium. First pitch is at 7:00 p.m. and will be available on UclickTV on pay-per-view, as well as all Joplin Outlaws and MINK League season passes.



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