POCATELLO — Matt Lindstrom was paid the big bucks to pitch in the majors.
Tuesday night at Halliwell Park, the former MLB relief pitcher proved his worth as a hitter.
Lindstrom smacked a pair of two-run home runs Tuesday, helping the South East Idaho Threads beat the Gate City Grays 10-2. The 39-year-old Rexburg native broke a scoreless tie in the fourth inning with a drive over the left-field fence, and matched it two innings later, giving the Threads a 4-2 lead.
Lindstrom registered one at-bat in eight MLB seasons — a strikeout. He finished Tuesday’s semi-pro game 3 for 5 with four RBIs after he added a ninth-inning double.
And he got to watch teammate Kody McFarland do his best rendition of Lindstrom. The Threads’ starting pitcher struck out 14 Grays batters over seven innings of work, holding the home team to two hits in the process.
McFarland mostly relied on his fastball to blow past Grays hitters.
He fanned six of the first seven batters he faced, striking out the side in the first and second innings.
PHOTOS: Grays vs. Threads
McFarland was scraped for two unearned runs in the fourth, when Hayden Foltz and Anthony Pannullo scored on an error. Tuesday’s overpowering effort was his second this season against Gate City (14-13, 10-8 Northern Utah League). Back on June 27, the tall right-hander struck out 17 Grays in eight innings, leading the Threads to a 3-2 win.
The Threads, who hail from Rexburg and surrounding communities, are 3-1 versus the Grays this season.
After McFarland was pulled, the Grays threatened to cut into the lead.
Braden Palmer and Pannullo led off the eighth inning with singles, and advanced to second and third with one out. A two-out walk by Chans Arce loaded the bases for pinch hitter Braeden Leiby, who went down swinging to strand them.
And in the ninth, Trent Cooper’s leadoff single was quickly erased when Nick Winters hit into a double play. Payton Higgins’ two-out triple was followed by a Palmer strikeout to end it.
On the mound, the Grays were paced by Mackay Bodily in his 2019 Gate City debut. To contrast McFarland, Bodily threw off Threads hitters with finesse and off-speed pitches. He gave up four runs over six innings, with five walks and one strikeout.
Gate City’s next game is July 25 at home against Logan.
THREADS 10, GRAYS 2
Threads 000 202 132 — 10 11 2
Grays 000 200 000 — 2 6 1
Threads — WP: McFarland. 2B: Lindstrom. HR: Cejudo, Lindstrom (2).
Grays — LP: Bodily. 3B: Higgins.