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Quick start helps Gateway cruise past Joliet

Gateway Grizzlies outfielder shatters windshield with grand slam

Brandon Thomas, Gateway Grizzlies outfielder and former New York Yankees draft pick, put his team is on top of Frontier League foe Joliet Slammers. But the blast landed on his own Toyota Tundra and shattered the windshield. The hit has made him a
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Brandon Thomas, Gateway Grizzlies outfielder and former New York Yankees draft pick, put his team is on top of Frontier League foe Joliet Slammers. But the blast landed on his own Toyota Tundra and shattered the windshield. The hit has made him a

Jordan Barnett worked six innings without allowing an earned run and the Gateway Grizzlies jumped out to a 6-0 lead Thursday en route to an 8-2 win over the Joliet Slammers at Joliet Route 66 Stadium.

Barrett (1-1) struck out seven, walked two, and allowed only four hits while allowing two unearned runs for the victory. Gateway (4-2) won its second straight game and the series.

As the second batter of the game, Andrew Daniel doubled down the left-field line and Shawon Dunston Jr.immediately followed with a two-bagger of his own to drive home Daniel. Although no other Grizzlies had hits in the first three innings, Daniel and Dunston Jr. supplied another Grizzlies run in the third inning: Daniel doubled again and Dunston Jr. knocked him in with an RBI triple.

Daniel finished 3-for-4 Thursday and 8-for-15 with five doubles and three RBI in the three-game series.

Gateway added four more runs in the fourth inning when the first five Grizzlies to bat — Rafael Valera, Connor Owings, Austin O’Brien, Gunnar Buhner, and Matt McPhearson — all had hits. Buhner drove in two with a double, the only extra-base hit of the frame, and the other four chipped in with singles. O’Brien and McPhearson contributed an RBI each.

Patrick Boyle pitched the seventh inning out of the Grizzlies’ bullpen and struck out all three Slammers he faced. Boyle has appeared in four of the Grizzlies’ first six games this season; over 3 2/3 innings, he’s struck out eight, walked two, and allowed neither a run nor a hit.

Gateway’s road trip continues back in the St. Louis area Friday with a 6:35 p.m. first pitch against the River City Rascals in O’Fallon, Mo.

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