Home BaseballGateway Grizzlies Stewart’s Big Day Leads Grizzlies To Seventh Straight Win

Stewart’s Big Day Leads Grizzlies To Seventh Straight Win

by Jason Guerette

The Gateway Grizzlies had a 2-1 lead against the Lake Erie Crushers on Wednesday afternoon, but busted out their bats late, scoring seven runs in their final two turns at bat, five of which coming off the bat of D.J. Stewart, and rolling to a 9-2 win at Mercy Health Stadium.  

Peter Zimmermann got the scoring started against the Crushers’ starter Angelo Baez (3-1), hitting a solo home run out to left field for a 1-0 lead in the second inning, but Sicnarf Loopstok tied it in the same frame in the same way, taking Collin Sullivan (3-0) out to left field for his first long ball of the season. After a triple, Kenen Irizarry tried to score on a fly ball to right field, but Jairus Richards nabbed him at home plate, keeping the score tied at 1-1. 

A pitcher’s duel ensued between Baez and Sullivan, with the former cracking first when the former Crusher Stewart led off the top of the fifth with a solo home run to make the score 2-1. Sullivan then got into a groove, retiring 13 straight batters while pitching into the eighth inning for Gateway, and ended up striking out eight in the contest to keep the Crushers’ bats down. 

In the top of the eighth, Gateway got a pair of men on base for Stewart, and he responded with a two-out, no-doubt, three-run blast over the left field fence for his second home run of the game and a 5-2 Grizzlies lead. Then, after Lake Erie got a run back in the bottom half to make the score 5-2, Gateway kept on scoring in the top of the ninth, plating four insurance runs on RBI singles by Zimmermann and Andrew Penner, followed by a two-run double by Stewart, giving him six RBIs on the day, and completing the scoring. 

Stewart finished 3-for-5 in the contest while setting a new career-best in RBIs, while Zimmermann finished a triple away from the cycle and was on base five times, driving in three runs to help lead the charge for the Grizzlies, who remain atop the Frontier League West Division at 13-4. 

The victory also gives the Grizzlies their seventh in a row, their longest such streak since winning nine games in a row from June 22- July 2, 2014. Gateway will now look to sweep the Crushers in Avon on Thursday, June 1, at 5:35 p.m. CT. The Grizzlies starter will be named before first pitch, and will go up against right-hander Yasel Santana of Lake Erie in the contest.

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Jason Guerette is the Grizzlies' Director of Broadcasting and Media Relations and the "Voice of the Grizzlies." 2023 will be his second season with the organization, handling lead broadcasting duties on the Grizzlies Media Network as well as being in charge of all team press releases and game-day media materials.

2023 will also be Jason's ninth season in the Frontier League after spending 2014-21 in the same role with the Southern Illinois Miners. Overall, he has broadcasted close to 800 games in the league, including playoffs. During the baseball offseason, he serves as a play-by-play broadcaster for Manhattan College and the New Jersey Institute of Technology, with games being seen on ESPN+ among other platforms.

In addition to broadcasting, Jason works as a public address announcer for Seton Hall University women's basketball as well as Columbia University men's and women's basketball. He also spent nine years working "behind the scenes" as a freelance board operator and highlight editor at Westwood One for their coverage of the NFL, NCAA football, and NCAA basketball.

Jason graduated from Seton Hall in 2012 with B.A. in Communication Studies and a minor in Broadcasting & Visual Media.

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