High Point 3, Gastonia 2
High Point’s scheduled starting pitcher, Mitch Atkins, was pushed back to a Friday start so Keefe made Thursday’s game a bullpen game. Opting to go without at DH, reliever Junior Rincon was sent to the mound to start. In the second, Rincon walked Cole Freeman and, with two outs, Stuart Levy homered to give the Honey Hunters a 2-0 lead.
Gastonia starter Reilly Hovis did not allow a hit through four innings but was lifted after walking Tyler Ladendorf to start the fifth. Ezequiel Zabaleta (L, 4-1) came on and walked Jay Gonzalez then allowed a two-run double into the right-center gap by Giovanny Alfonzo to tie the game at 2-2. Zabaleta then walked Michael Russell and Ben Aklinski to load the bases. Zabaleta walked Logan Morrison to give the Rockers a 3-2 lead before the Honey Hunters turned to lefty Onas Farfan who retired Quincy Latimore to end the threat.
Mickey Jannis (W, 2-1) entered the game for the Rockers in the third inning and held the Honey Hunters hitless until Joseph Rosa lined a single to right with one out in the sixth. Rosa moved to second on a wild pitch, a knuckleball that got away from catcher Mike Gulino, but Jannis induced an easy ground ball out from Reece Hampton to escape any damage.
Jannis would complete five innings and allow just one hit while striking out four and walking two. Bryce Hensley came on in the eighth and allowed one hit while shutting out Gastonia before yielding to Tyler Higgins in the ninth. Higgins hit Jaylen Smith with a pitch with two outs but was able to retire Levy to earn his third save of the year.
Gastonia finished the night with four hits while Alfonzo had both of High Point’s hits, adding a sixth inning single to go with his two-run double.
High Point is now 23-28 in the second half of the Atlantic League season and 62-55 overall. Kentucky defeated Lexington 8-3 Thursday night and the Rockers hold a 1.5-game lead over the Genomes in the ALPB Wild Card race.
The Rockers return home and start a three-game series at Truist Point against the York Revolution on Friday night at 6:35 p.m.
Long Island 6, Lancaster 3
(Central Islip, N.Y., Sept. 1, 2022) – The Long Island Ducks defeated the Lancaster Barnstormers 6-3 on Thursday night in the rubber game of a three-game series at Fairfield Properties Ballpark.
Long Island took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a sacrifice foul fly off the bat of Alejandro De Aza that scored Phil Caulfield. A three-run second inning off Barnstormers starter Oscar De La Cruz, highlighted by L.J. Mazzilli’s RBI fielder’s choice and Deibinson Romero’s two-out, two-run double to right, extended the Ducks advantage to four.
Lancaster got on the scoreboard in the sixth courtesy of a two-out RBI single through the right side from Trayvon Robinson off Ducks starter Joe Iorio. An RBI double to right by Anthony Peroni and a sac fly to right off the bat of Joseph Carpenter in the seventh closed the gap to 4-3. However, the Ducks countered with two runs of their own in the bottom of the frame on Romero’s RBI single to right and Jose Sermo’s sac fly to center.
Iorio (10-4) earned the win, tossing six innings of three-run ball, allowing five hits and a walk while striking out five. De La Cruz (8-3) took the loss, yielding four runs on five hits and three walks over six innings with six strikeouts. Tyler Webb collected his 13th save of the season with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
Romero led the Flock offensively with two hits and three RBIs. De Aza added two hits, an RBI and two runs.
The Ducks hit the road on Friday to open a three-game series against the Staten Island FerryHawks. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at Staten Island University Hospital Community Park.
Charleston 9, Southern Maryland 4
(9/1/2022, Charleston, WV) The Charleston Dirty Birds scored early and often against the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs in their 9-4 victory. The Dirty Birds scored three runs in the first inning and never looked back.
Alex Merithew (L, 6-3) went five and one-third innings tonight, allowing eight runs and six earned. Merithew settled down, keeping the Dirty Birds off the board from the second through the fourth innings. But Charleston rallied again in the fifth and sixth in the loss.
In the first inning, with two runners on, Edwin Espinal lined a single into center, giving the Dirty Birds a 1-0 lead. Charleston added two more runs on a ground out and an RBI single from Diego Goris, putting the Dirty Birds on top 3-0.
The game remained 3-0 until the fifth inning. With runners on second and third, Diego Goris dribbled a ground ball to left, scoring two to put Charleston ahead 5-0. In the sixth, Charleston added three more runs on four hits, including a two-RBI double from Nick Heath, giving Charleston an 8-0 lead.
Former Blue Crab Denson Hull (W, 3-9) pitched six innings tonight, allowing no runs on five hits and two walks while striking out four batters.
Southern Maryland trailed 8-0 going into the eighth inning. With two runners in scoring position, David Harris bounced a single up the middle, cutting the deficit to 8-2. Charleston picked up a run in the eighth, but Southern Maryland responded in the ninth. With a runner on first base, Ian Yetsko smashed a two-run homer over the wall in left, cutting Charleston’s lead to 9-4.
Cody Strayer also pitched for the Blue Crabs tonight, going two and two-thirds innings, allowing only one run. Meanwhile, Jack Sundberg extended his on-base streak to 34 games with two outs in the ninth inning.
The Blue Crabs will be back in action tomorrow night at 6:35 as they take on the Lancaster Barnstormers at Regency Furniture Stadium.
Kentucky 10, Lexington 3
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kentucky Wild Health Genomes scored four runs in the third and went on to defeat the Lexington Legends 10-3 Thursday night at Wild Health Field.
Courtney Hawkins homered for the fifth straight game for Lexington, knocking a two-run shot in the third inning. Hawkins has eight homers over the last five games. He also contributed to Lexington’s other run, driving an RBI double to center. Hawkins now has 44 home runs on the season, the second-most ever by an ALPB player. Newark’s Ozzie Canseco holds the Atlantic League record with 48 homers for Newark in 2000. Hawkins also raised his season batting average to .300 and finished the game with 111 RBI. That is tied for the third-most RBI in a season by an ALPB hitter.
Wild Health was led by Luke Becker and Austin Rei who each had three hits. Khris Davis hit his 16th homer of the season and Felix Pie drilled his 11th round-tripper of the season.
Alexis Candelario (W, 202) earned the win with five innings of work, allowing all three runs and striking out six. Ean Walda (L, 0-3) allowed 10 hits and six runs over his six innings of work.
Staten Island 7, York 6 (11 innings)
(September 1, 2022 – York, Pa.): After Wednesday's marathon affair, the York Revolution and Staten Island FerryHawks played another extra inning contest on Thursday evening at PeoplesBank Park. In the 11-inning battle, Staten Island once again came out on top to win the game and series by a 7-6 score.
Duke von Schamann made the start for York for the final time in a Revs uniform. Von Schamann will depart to join Team Germany for WBC qualifiers before beginning his coaching career at Division II Oklahoma Christian University.
York’s offense built an early cushion in the first, scoring first on a Telvin Nash single. Two batters later with the bases loaded, Jhon Nunez hit a tapper back to pitcher Anthony Rodriguez who could not come up with the ball cleanly, and airmailed the catcher on the throw home, allowing two runs to score. It took six batters for Rodriguez to record an out, doing so on a Yefri Perez sacrifice fly. After the first, York spotted themselves an early 4-0 lead.
Staten Island got on the board in the third, courtesy of a two-run homer to right by leadoff man Antoine Duplantis, cutting the lead to 4-2.
The Revs were able to get one of those runs back in the bottom of the third when Nash, who started the inning with a double, came in to score on a Nunez sacrifice fly.
The FerryHawks plated another in the top of the fifth. After a one-out hit by pitch, Andres Noriega came around to score on a single from Dilson Herrera, cutting the lead to 5-3.
Following a shaky start, Rodriguez settled in to retire the final seven and 12 of the last 13 he faced, ending his night at 123 pitches over six innings.
Von Schamann took the mound for the top of the seventh, going 1-2-3 including a strikeout, capping off his final start with seven innings of three-run ball. He did not allow a single walk, struck out three, and induced two double plays on the night. Von Schamann exited to a nice ovation in his swan song at PeoplesBank Park, in line for the win.
Von Schamann leaves York ranking fifth all-time in starts (60), eighth in strikeouts (202), and seventh in wins (21).
Franklin Van Gurp took the mound in the eighth in his PeoplesBank Park debut, tossing a perfect frame with strikeouts to start and end it.
Roniel Raudes entered for the potential save, but danger struck for the Revs in the ninth for the second straight night. After the first two hitters of the inning reached on singles, Mariel Bautista hit a slow ground ball to the right side but York was unable to record an out as Perez had to range all the way to his left and lost his footing on the throw, as a run came in to score, cutting it to 5-4. With runners on the corners and no outs, Cristopher Cespedes hit a chopper to third base. Josue Herrera initially looked the runner back to third before getting the force at second. Perez tried to back-pick the runner at third, but his throw sailed out of play, allowing the tying run to score.
The Revs were unable to answer in the ninth, going down in order and sending the game to extras for the second straight night.
The automatic runner scored for Staten Island in the tenth against York righty Brett de Geus on a perfectly executed hit-and-run from Dilson Herrera. That would be the only run for the FerryHawks in the inning, however, giving the York offense a chance in the bottom half.
JC Encarnacion started the inning as the runner on second and with Nash at the plate and one out, successfully stole third, bringing the tying run 90 feet away. Nash drove him in with a double down the third base line to tie the game, but York was unable to come up with anything further, sending the game to the 11th tied at 6-6.
Nick Green pitched the top of the 11th and once again Staten Island scored the automatic runner, this time on a double from Christopher Cespedes. Once again, however, they would not be able to muster anything else, taking a 7-6 lead to the bottom half.
York could not answer again, however, as Encarnacion tapped into a fielder’s choice to end the game, handing York a heartbreaking series loss.
The Revs have now dropped five of their last six games and will venture to High Point for the weekend. The series opener on Friday will get underway at 6:35 p.m.
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