BANDITS AND BITE SPLIT DOUBLEHEADER
Josh Roberts comes one hit closer to 100 in his ABL career during the day’s two games
Josh Roberts is just one hit away from 100 ABL hits
ADELAIDE, SA – Both the Brisbane Bandits and the Adelaide Bite took their turns with stellar pitching and timely hitting as the two teams split the Saturday doubleheader at Coopers Stadium in Round 11 of Australian Baseball League action.
The Adelaide Bite came out swinging and with some help from Darren Fidge’s complete game victory, took down the Brisbane Bandits 7-1 in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader in Adelaide.
Fidge threw just the sixth complete game in the ABL this season, as the Bite took advantage of an unusual lack of command from Brisbane’s ace Alex Maestri in the first inning. The Italian right-hander hit two batters and walked four in Adelaide’s first at-bat, giving the Bite an early advantage.
The Bandits got on the board first, after Matthew Roxburgh singled in the opening frame, moved around on a Josh Roberts single and came in on a sacrifice fly from Brad Dutton. That was all the visitors could manage however, as the Bite starter appeared to settle in after that inning. Fidge (4-3) went the full nine innings, giving up just one run, scattering six hits, walking one and striking out six on the day.
Maestri (4-4) got back on track after the three-run first for the Bite, but the Bandits bats couldn’t get him out of the hole. The Italian Stallion went five innings, allowing four earned runs on just four hits with four walks and a strikeout, just one day after being voted as the fan favourite for Brisbane.
The Bandits ace needs even more support now as he competes against the five other candidates for the league’s favourite, as voted by the fans. Maestri took a commanding lead in the Facebook race for Brisbane before eventually winning, no big surprise after the year he’s had. The righty has started nine games, including the third complete game of the ABL season. He’s among league leaders with 63 2/3 innings pitched and 53 strikeouts on the season, to go with his 3.25 ERA.
John Veitch came on in relief of Maestri to finish out the game. Veitch went three innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits with three strikeouts. Mathew Smith and James Jones led the charge for the Bite, each with a home run and two RBI on the day. Smith’s home run was his third of the season and Jones notched his eighth of the year.