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Heat sweep double-header with Sydney
The Perth Heat got the brooms out to sweep the Blue Sox in Sydney
12/03/2017 12:07 AM ET
MICHAEL BROSSEAU ( PERTH HEAT ) ABL RD 3 - SYDNEY BLUE SOX V PERTH HEAT
MICHAEL BROSSEAU ( PERTH HEAT ) ABL RD 3 - SYDNEY BLUE SOX V PERTH HEAT 

The Perth Heat put on a superb team display to claim an 8-4 and 7-4 sweep of the Sydney Blue Sox in their ABL double-header at Blacktown Baseball Stadium on Sunday.

A day after rainfall caused their double-header to be postponed, the players soaked up the sun during a seven-inning Game One and eight-inning Game Two.

The Heat got off to a fast start in Game One, scoring four runs in the top of the first inning.

Back-to-back singles from Tim Kennelly and Mike Brosseau set up former MLB infielder Luke Hughes who ripped an RBI double before Zac Law and Jess Williams struck RBI singles to put the Heat firmly in control.

Sydney hit back with a run of their own in the bottom of the first after Perth pitcher Kyle Simon slipped whilst making a routine throw to first base.

Simon, who has found life difficult in his previous two appearances this season battled hard but struggled for consistency.

The Californian pitcher went on to throw four innings, giving up four earned runs as he was relieved by Scott Mitchinson. 

On the other side, Blue Sox starter Craig Anderson's early season struggles also continued, as he was removed from the game in the fourth inning - tagged with the loss and four earned runs.

Anderson left the game off the back of leadoff singles to Williams and Ryan Kift in the fourth inning before Brosseau's RBI single stretched the Heat's lead.

Brosseau now has 13 RBIs on the season - tied for second in the league.

In the fifth inning, Mitchinson, who picked up the win in Game One soon found himself in a bases-loaded jam and had to be relieved by veteran southpaw Dan Schmidt who picked up a crucial out to see his team through a difficult period.

Some smart base running from Williams and Jake Fraley scored two more runs for the Heat in the top of the sixth inning to put some space between them and the hosts.

With the game a save situation, Manager Andy Kyle called on usual starter Tom Bailey to close the game.

Bailey, who was scheduled to start Game Four was moved to the bullpen after Saturday's rain delays.

The 25-year-old adjusted well to the role, nailing down the win after Jake Turnbull added an insurance run in the top of the seventh.

"I had time to prepare for the change, but coming out of the bullpen is a little bit different - you have to stay ready to come in at any moment," Bailey said. 

Sydney came out swinging in Game Two, scoring three runs in the first inning to rattle Heat starter, Nick Veale.

Alex Hall responded for Perth with an RBI double to cut the deficit to 3-1.

After starting the season 0-12, Hall now has six hits in his last 17 at-bats.

Veale, pitching in his third season for the Heat issued five walks and allowed four hits in a rough outing as he was removed from the game in the third inning and relieved by Schmidt.

The Heat didn't back down, however, and found themselves within one run when Hughes launched his second home run of the series.

Hughes, who famously hit a home run in his first MLB at-bat in 2010 now has four home runs on the season.

"It's an awesome feeling to get the win - obviously we had a tough week last week," Hughes said.

"If we work hard for the rest of the season hopefully we continue what we've started."

A sacrifice fly re-established Sydney's two-run cushion before Kennelly launched a three-run home run to put Perth on top 5-4.

Manager Andy Kyle, knowing the importance of the situation turned to his bullpen once more. 

Travis McDonald, Jett Wright and Cameron Lamb were all called upon to pitch and did their job to maintain the Heat's one-run lead.

Lamb, fresh from collecting the save in Game One on Friday threw 2.2 scoreless innings to pick up his second save of the season.

Earlier, Fraley ripped an RBI double before coming around to score on a throwing error to give Perth some breathing room.

The Heat now returns home for a four-game series against the Adelaide Bite starting Friday 8 December. 

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