Leafs' Offence Explodes; Take Series Lead Over Cardinals

TORONTO - Showtime.

The Toronto Maple Leafs clobbered the Hamilton Cardinals 21-6 on Thursday evening to take a 1-0 series lead in their first-round, best-of-three series.

Toronto starter Marek Deska picked up the win, tossing six innings and allowing three earned runs on six hits and two walks.

The crafty right-hander struck out six batters.

Maple Leafs' designated hitter Sean Reilly put on a show at the plate, going five-for-five with a pair of two-run home runs.

Cardinals starter Julian Tymochko did not fare well in his IBL playoff debut, allowing seven earned runs on four hits and three bases on balls in just 1.1 innings pitched.

HAMILTON - 6-12-1

TORONTO - 21-21-2

BIGGEST PLAY OF THE GAME: Up 6-1 in the bottom of the second inning, Maple Leafs' right fielder Marcus Marcus Knecht hit a three-run double to make it a 8-1 ball game for the Leafs.


9. The Leafs' offence put up a nine-spot in the bottom of the second inning, all but ending the game by that point.

9 (again): All nine batters in the Leafs' lineup recorded a hit tonight, with each starter reaching base at least twice in tonight's game.

14. A tough outing out of the bullpen for Cardinals reliever Ben Braun tonight, who allowed 14 earned runs on 17 hits and five walks in four and two-thirds of an inning pitched.

15. In the second inning, the Leafs sent 15 batters to the plate.

21. The 21 runs scored by the Leafs tonight was the most runs scored by the Leafs in a playoff game since they scored 19 runs in the infamous game five of their first-round playoff series against the now-defunct Burlington Twins.


- Justin Cicatello will start game two tomorrow night in Hamilton.

With a win, the Leafs can sweep the Cardinals and advance to the semis.


The Leafs travel to Bernie Arbour Stadium tomorrow as they try to sweep the Cardinals.

Should the Cardinals win and force a winner-take-all game three, that game will take place this Sunday afternoon at Christie Pits.

For more information, follow the Maple Leafs on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @iblmapleleafs.

Photo: @LaRussaGastro