Maple Leafs set season-high run total in win vs Majors

By Rob Vona

The Toronto Maple Leafs used a season-high 21 runs on 22 hits to beat the London Majors by a score of 21-10 on Sunday afternoon at Dominico Field. 

“[We] had to put in a word with London,” said Maple Leafs outfielder J.J. Dutton following the game. “It was a great comeback from that Friday night loss in London.”

Toronto jumped on the board early in the bottom of the first inning with two runs courtesy of a sac-fly from catcher Justin Marra and a double down the left-field line from his brother and second baseman - Dan Marra. 

Majors DH Cleveland Brownlee was quick to respond with a booming home run off of Julian Valdez that cleared the left-field wall with ease, cutting the deficit in half. 

Jordan Castaldo gave the Maple Leafs two more runs with a double to left-field to extend his hitting streak to six games and his on-base streak to 16 games. 

Castaldo has collected 15 hits during his six-game hit streak, and finished Sunday’s match with  game-high six RBI.

Valdez settled in after surrendering the home run to Brownlee, the 24-year-old would give up just one more run in his five inning outing that saw him strikeout six batters. 

The Maple Leafs exploded for six runs in the bottom of the third inning that featured four home runs.

The speedy shortstop Jose Vinicio got things started with a two-run home run to make it a 6-1 game.

Castaldo, third baseman Johnathan Solazzo and first baseman Garrett Takamatsu went back-to-back-to-back on three consecutive pitches, opening the floodgates as the Maple Leafs now owned a 10-1 lead. 

The next five Maple Leafs runs scored via two walks, two hit batters and a sac-fly from Castaldo, while the Majors scraped across a run in the fifth inning on a groundout to shortstop from centre-fielder Austin Wilkie. 

Heading into the eighth inning the Maple Leafs owned a 15-2 lead.

The Majors turned heads with a whopping eight runs in the inning, highlighted by a base-clearing double from right-fielder Starling Joseph who finished with a team-high two hits and three RBI. 

Although the Maple Leafs still had a large lead to work with, the lead went from 13 to just five. 

Dutton kept the ball rolling as he left the yard for his first career Intercounty Baseball League (IBL) home run to lead off the bottom half of the eighth inning.

“It felt awesome,” said Dutton. “I’ve been waiting for it for a while.”

A pair of singles from Castaldo and outfielder Ryan Dos Santos were combined with another solo home run from Solazzo to round out the 22-hit game for the Maple Leafs - the most they have recorded in a single game all season. 

With his two home runs, Solazzo now sits in sole position of second place in the IBL home run race with 12. He leads the team in said category and in RBI with 36. 

The Maple Leafs cruised to their 11-run victory and will take on the Brantford Red Sox tomorrow afternoon at 2:00 p.m. at Arnold Anderson Stadium. 

The post game report is brought to you by Woodbine Racetrack, official sponsor of Maple Leafs baseball.