Legion Baseball: Rowan 13, Kannapolis 2
By Mike London
Rowan County’s Corbin Shive is getting his home-run trot down pat.
Practice makes perfect, and Shive homered for the fifth consecutive game to spark a 13-2 breeze past Kannapolis Monday at Newman Park.
Rowan’s Forrest Buchanan (5-0) pitched six stout innings. Matt Miller and Trey Holmes also homered for Rowan, while Bobby Zimmerman hit one for Kannapolis.
Not long ago, Shive had one homer to his credit. Now he has seven.
A two-homer night on June 14 against Lincoln County got him started. Since then he’s connected in league games against Lexington, Mooresville, Stanly and Kannapolis.
“I’ve never had a hot streak anything like this,” Shive said. “But it still seems like I’m only getting one hit. I’d like to get a few singles to go along with the homers.”
Rowan (11-4, 8-3), which stayed tied for first with tonight’s foe ó South Rowan ó will take that nightly homer, especially with men on base. Shive has hit two grand slams this season. His latest blast was a three-run shot that snapped a 1-1 tie.
Philip Miclat was on third base and Zach Smith was at second with one out when Shive came to the plate in the third inning. With first base open, Kannapolis pitcher Daniel Welch had a chance to pitch around Shive, but the right-handed hitter hammered a 3-2 pitch over the right-field wall.
“I was looking away. That’s where the pitch was so I took it that way,” Shive said.
Kannapolis coach Matt Stack is an assistant at West Rowan and knows what Shive can do. Welch’s ill-fated pitch was supposed to be off the plate, but it drifted in far enough for Shive to do serious damage.
Rowan made four of its five errors early, blew a rundown that handed Kannapolis a quick run and appeared headed for a rough night. But Buchanan stabilized things. He didn’t rattle and kept throwing quality pitches.
“Forrest threw enough strikes, and Kannapolis never really could put anything together,” Rowan coach Jim Gantt said. “The middle of Kannapolis’ lineup has got a lot of power, but Forrest was able to work around those guys some and go after the bottom of the order.”
Shive’s long one gave Buchanan a lead to work with, but Zimmerman’s solo shot made it 5-2 in the fourth and Kannapolis brought the tying run to the plate before Buchanan worked out of two-out, two-on jam in the sixth.
Noah Holmes’ two-run double in the Rowan sixth made it 7-2 and provided breathing room.
Then Trey Holmes’ double and Smith’s RBI single keyed a two-run seventh.
“We were hanging in there and had a real shot, but then it snowballed on us,” Stack said. “Walks, errors ó kind of the story of our season.
Four Kannapolis Legion alumni ó Zach Ward, Brett Bartles, Garrett Sherrill annd Kyle Seager ó have been drafted since 2005, but the Wojans (3-10, 3-7) are in danger of missing the playoffs this year. They’re battling for the eighth and final berth with Wilkes.
The 10-run rule arrived suddenly in the Rowan eighth. With two out, Casey Little walked and Miller, the backup catcher, crushed a homer to left off reliever Ryan Goodman for an 11-2 lead.
“He left a curveball up and in,” Miller said.
Ethan Fisher singled before Trey Holmes, who was batting leadoff, stroked an opposite-field homer to send fans home. They left talking about Buchanan and Shive.
“Forrest didn’t surprise me ó he’s been throwing good all summer,” Miller said. “He hit his spots all night.”
By Mike London email@example.comLANDIS ó South Rowan’s Maverick Miles watched a 27-game, two-season hitting streak end Friday with an 0-for-4... read more