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Brilliant Heat bounce back against Bandits




The Perth Heat bounced back impressively with both another dominant pitching showing and some impressive hitting to beat the Brisbane Bandits 5-0 in Adelaide on Tuesday.


The Heat were coming off a pair of losses at the hands of both the Bandits and Adelaide Giants in the Australian Baseball League's South Australian hub on Monday at Dicolor Australia Stadium, but they had the chance to immediately bounce back on Tuesday morning.


And the Heat certainly did that with Beau Sulser leading the charge with a brilliant starting pitching performance while the win was on the back of a huge three-run homer from Tampa Bay Rays prospect Grant Witherspoon.


Following the losses to the Bandits and Giants on Monday, the Heat weren’t short on motivation for their second last game in Adelaide on Tuesday morning and it was Sulser back at the mount to start proceedings.


The Pittsburgh Pirates prospect has been impressive in his first ABL season and he couldn’t have looked any better as the game unfolded on Tuesday, but the Bandits were keeping Perth's bats in check too curtesy of Michele Vassalotti.


It was a pitching masterclass through the first half of the contest and scores remained tied without a run until the top of the fifth inning when the Heat blew the game open.


Ford Proctor and Robbie Glendinning got themselves on base with singles before Witherspoon hit them all home with a home run to suddenly make it a 3-0 ball game.


The Heat then went further ahead with a home run from Abiezel Ramirez to open the seventh inning before later a double from Proctor would end up driving home Ulrich Bojarski and the 5-0 victory was secured.


Not only did Rays prospects Ramirez and Witherspoon star by hitting home runs in the victory, Sulser's pitching performance was brilliant. Over the course of six innings, he threw six strikeouts, only gave up four hits and didn’t concede a run.


He was then relieved by fellow Californian Nate Gercken who closed the deal and the shutout for the Heat in the final inning.


The Heat now have one more game to play in the Adelaide hub and it's against the hometown Giants on Wednesday. They will then return to Perth and play the Giants in four games over three days at Empire Ballpark starting Saturday.


By Chris Pike


ABL REGULAR SEASON, ADELAIDE HUB GAME 6

PERTH HEAT 5 (Bojarski, Ramirez, Witherspoon, Glendinning, Proctor)

BRISBANE BANDITS 0

W – Beau Sulser; L – Matt Hardy

Tuesday January 19, Dicolor Australia Stadium


IMAGE: SMP Images