New Richmond Millers sending four to SCVBL All-Star Game
Team speed is an asset the New Richmond Millers are learning to use to their advantage.
Speed was one of the biggest factors that weighed in the Millers’ favor on Friday, when they ran past the Eau Claire Bears, 8-3, at New Richmond’s Citizens Field.
The Millers now have a week off between games. They don’t play again until next Sunday, when they play at Plum City in a 1:30 p.m. start. Four Millers will be in action this Wednesday, at the St. Croix Valley Baseball League All-Star Game. The game will be played at 2 p.m. at First National Bank Stadium in River Falls. Millers selected for the game are Jaryd Marks, Grant Riemenschneider, Austin Juhl and Jordan Luehman.
Friday’s win showed how the Millers have changed this season and why the win total is starting to mount. The Millers started the game with a sacrifice bunt and a double steal in the first inning. While they didn’t score out of that bases-loaded situation, the message was sent. The Millers reloaded the bases in the third inning and this time, they cashed in for two runs. Another run was added in the fourth inning when Juhl singled home Riemenschneider.
Eau Claire tied the game with one run in the fifth inning and two more in the sixth.
Luehman started New Richmond’s sixth inning with a single and Juhl followed with a double. They both scored when Noah Towberman reached on an error. Three more runs came home in the eighth inning, capped by a two-run single from Jake Jirik.
Juhl led the team with three hits and Luehman and Tommy Grygienc both finished with two hits.
Coleman Roskam started on the mound for the Millers, working into the sixth inning. Lane Christensen got the pitching win, working 3.1 innings of shutout relief.On the mound
Pitching is another area that is developing into a strength for the Millers. Millers manager Ryan Stephens said Riemenschneider has earned the right to be called the top starting pitcher. Roskam and Dante LaDuke are competing for the second starting spot, with Christensen among those getting long looks as relievers.
LaDuke got his chance last Wednesday when the Millers played at East Bethel. The Millers were leading 7-3 when LaDuke left the game. East Bethel came back against a trio of Millers relievers to win 8-7.
Both these games were played outside the SCVBL. Stephens said he could have played for the win Wednesday and leave LaDuke in longer, but he wanted to get the other pitchers work to get them ready for future work.
The Millers did have 12 hits Wednesday. That was led by a 3-4 night from Towberman, with Dakota Belter and Logan Peterson supplying two hits each.
A number of the Millers’ hits last week came off bunts. The bunting and aggressive play has sparked the offense. Stephens said the team’s batting average has climbed from .187 to .230.