Print  Print © MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.


Heat rout Bandits behind Kennelly grand slam
01/19/2018 6:48 AM ET

A Tim Kennelly grand slam has powered the Perth Heat to a blowout 15-5 win over the Brisbane Bandits on Friday.

Entering the game on a two-game losing streak, the Heat jumped out of the blocks early to take the lead in the first inning - Pittsburgh Pirates prospect Robbie Glendinning driving Jake Fraley home with one of four hits on the night.

Before coming around to score, Fraley broke the ABL single-season stolen base record - picking up his 32nd of the season to overtake the previous record of 31 set by Canberra's Jon Berti in 2013/14.

"It's been a blessing to play in the Australian Baseball League," Fraley said.

On the mound, Heat starter Kyle Simon was solid early on - recording four strikeouts in 5.1 innings on route to his fifth win of the season.

The 27-year-old fourth-round MLB Draft pick now has five wins in his last six outings after starting the season 0-2.

Tim Kennelly's grand slam then broke the game out, handing the Heat a 6-0 lead to give Simon plenty of run support.

With the grand slam, Kennelly snapped out of a 0-7 slump to start the series.

"I put a good swing and it felt good," Kennelly said.

Garrett Whitley followed up with a two-run shot to remove former big leaguer Travis Blackley from the game and extend the Heat's advantage.

The Bandits, riding a 10 game winning streak didn't let their heads drop - Mitch Nilsson with a three-run home run to put the home side on the board before T.J. Bennett's 13th homer of the year put his team right back in the contest.

Brisbane DH Nilsson clearly enjoys playing against Perth after going 9-17 with three home runs and 12 RBIs when the Bandits' visited the Heat in late November.

With the bases loaded, Alex Hall's sacrifice fly put the Heat back on track before Luke Hughes' two-run home run gave the Heat some insurance.

Fraley then broke his second record of the day, becoming the first Heat player to hit 11 regular season home runs.

"I didn't know that. I don't follow all those kinds of stats," Fraley said when quizzed about his record-breaking day.

Whitley's RBI double rounded out the scoring before MLB pitcher Warwick Saupold threw a scoreless ninth inning to wrap up the Heat's 23rd win of the season.

Saupold has now pitched 2.2 scoreless frames for the Heat since his return to action a fortnight ago.

With the result, the Heat tie up the series at 1-1 and snap an 11 game losing streak at Holloway Field ahead of Saturday's double-header.



This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.