The Chillicothe Paints punched their ticket to the Prospect League post-season playoffs in August, clinching the First Half Ohio River Valley Division Championship Tuesday, with a 10-3 win over the West Virginia Miners at V.A. Memorial Stadium.
The win broke the tiebreaker with Johnstown. The two “half-season” winners advance to the playoffs. If Chillicothe has the best record in the Ohio Division for the second half, the second place team would also advance to the post-season. Chillicothe secures a home playoff game against the team with the best record in the second half among divisional opponents. That playoff game, the division championship, will be held at VA Memorial Stadium Sunday, August 7 at 6:05pm.
Tuesday’s game highlights saw Chillicothe post 10 runs on 11 hits vs West Virginia, committing one error, while the Miners were held to 3 runs on 7 hits, with one error. Pitcher Evan Wolf got the win for the Paints with Jake Norris gaining the save.
Chillicothe travels to Johnstown tonight for their next game.
The Chillicothe Paints open their 2022 Prospect League baseball season June 1st on the road at Champion City in Springfield, Ohio.
Chillicothe is being led this season by first year skipper Jackson White, who served as the Paints pitching coach last season.
Among this year’s Paints roster is Paint Valley High School graduate Cruz McFadden, who has become Mount Vernon Nazarene’s all-time saves leader in just his first two seasons.
Teays Valley High School graduate Brett Carson, who plays college baseball for Marietta, is also on the Paints roster.
Manager Jackson White talks to Litter Media’s Mike Smith about having McFadden and Carson on the roster:
The Paints have their home opening game Thursday, June 2nd in a return match with Champion City. The Paints follow that up at home with West Virginia on Friday, before traveling to West Virginia on Saturday.
The Chillicothe Paints wrapped up a Prospect League Playoff berth Wednesday with a 13-3 regular season finale win over West Virginia, coupled with a Johnstown Mill Rats 12-6 loss to Champion City.
The Paints needed that combination to gain the post-season slot.
Chillicothe scored a total of 30 runs in their two-game series at West Virginia, winning 17-8 on Tuesday and 13-3 Wednesday.
Johnstown lost two of three games to Champion City to conclude the regular season, knocking the Mill Rats out of the playoff equation as the Paints finished red-hot in their final week of the season.
The Paints scored single runs in the first and second innings, three runs in the third, then added four runs in both the sixth and seventh innings to role up the 10 run rule win.
The Paints had 14 hits against the Miners, committing one error. West Virginia had 5 hits and 3 errors.
Trey Maeker led the Chillicothe offense with two hits and four RBI’s against WV on Wednesday. Alex Ludwick, Nathan Karaffa and Jackson Feltner each had two hits and two RBI’s.
Chillicothe, the second half Ohio River Valley champ, will play first half winner Champion City in the Eastern Conference Division Championship, Thursday August 5th. Champion City will host Thursday’s game in Springfield, Ohio.
The Divisional Championship Round consists of one winner-take-all game between the winner of the first half in each division and the division’s second-half winner. Division Championship games will take place August 5.
The winners of the divisional games advance to the Conference Championship Round. Again, this is a one-game, winner-take-all game between the two winners of the division championship games in the Eastern Conference and the two division championship game winners in the Western Conference. These games will take place August 7.
The Eastern and Western Conference champions play each other in the best-of-three Prospect League Championship Series. Game one is August 9, hosted by the team with the lesser regular-season record. After a travel day, game two is August 11, hosted by the team with the better regular-season record. If necessary, game three will take place August 12, at the same stadium as game two.
Chillicothe outscored Champion City 12-11 Sunday to finish a weekend road sweep of the Kings.
The Paints snapped a 2-2 tie with a six-run third inning, but their 8-2 lead was short lived as Champion City answered with 4 more runs in the home half of the inning.
The teams entered the 9th tied at 9-all when Chillicothe scored three times for a 12-9 advantage. Rueben Ramierez (Point Park) yielded two runs by the Kings before managing to get out of trouble and preserve the win.
Ben Gbur (Wooster) smacked his ninth home run of the season while Alex Ludwick (Baldwin Wallace) and Will Spear (Indianapolis) drove in three runs each. Spear had a two-run double in the 9th to give the Paints the necessary cushion to nail down the victory.
It’s the sixth straight win for the Paints who head to Lafayette for a three-game series with the Aviators. Lafayette owns the best record in the Prospect League this summer, but is 5-5 in their last ten games while Chillicothe is 9-1 in the same stretch. The Aviators were nipped by Burlington Sunday 4-3.