Moosic, PA. The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (7-7) stranded 12 runners and combined for nine hits in a 5-2 extra-inning loss to the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (6-9) Friday night at PNC Field. The loss dropped the club to 0-1 in the race for the IronRail trophy.
The game began on a positive note for SWB. The RailRiders plated the first run on a Lehigh Valley miscue Ramon Flores reached on a walk and, with two out in the inning, Jose Pirela struck a fly that IronPIgs right fielder Clete Thomas misplayed, allowing Flores to hustle around the bases and score.
Alfredo Aceves, making his first start of the season, didn’t disappoint. The long-time veteran tossed five scoreless innings, racking up five strikeouts. Aceves’ counterpart, Barry Enright, was equally as impressive. Enright twirled six and allowed one unearned run, needing 92 pitches to work his way through the RailRider order.
After Aceves departed, the IronPigs offense found its punch. Shane Greene came on in relief and allowed two base hits, the first a leadoff double to Thomas. After a strikeout by Jim Murphy and a groundball to second by Koyie Hill moved Thomas to third. Reid Brignac plated the IronPigs’ first run on a double to right.
After a scoreless RailRider sixth, the IronPigs took the lead in the seventh. Right-hander Preston Claibornebecame the third RailRider pitcher to make an appearance. Claiborne labored, Steve Susdorf led off with a walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Ronny Cedeno. Susdorf scored after Thomas laced a line drive to right. Flores did his best to keep the deficit at one, firing a bullet to the plate to nail Troy Hanzawa on the same play. The outfield assist marked the second of the campaign for Flores.
Not to be outdone, SWB avoided the shutdown inning with a run of its own in the home half. After a groundout by Flores began the inning, Pirela added his second base hit on a fly to ball left. Zoilo Almonte, after clubbing two home runs the day before, slapped a single by the glove of Hanzawa to move Pirela to third. The RailRiders evened the game 2-2 on a sacrifice fly by Russ Canzler.
In the eleventh, the wheels came off for Yoshinori Tateyama. With one out and bruised batter, followed by a pair of singles, one of the bunt variety, led to the first of three runs on the inning. The deficit that proved too much to overcome as the RailRiders fell, 5-2 in 11 innings.
Tateyama (0-1) suffered the loss, while Luis Garcia (1-0) was awarded the win. Seth Rosin (1) received the save.
The RailRiders will continue an eight-game homestand at PNC Field Saturday, April 19 at 7:05 p.m. against Lehigh Valley. SWB sends right-hander Bruce Billings (2-1, 2.81) to the hill, while the IronPIgs toss right-hander Sean O’Sullivan (0-1, 6.30) gets the nod. John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on radio with first pitch slated for 7:05 p.m. The radio pregame show starts at 6:35 p.m. on NEPA Sports Radio – The GAME, Northeast PA’s largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM. For season ticket information, single-game tickets or to book a ballpark group outing, call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
All nine RailRiders hits were singles.
The RailRiders were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.
Adonis Garcia went 4-for-5.
Jose Pirela and Garcia combined for six of SWB’s nine hits
Throughout the 2014 campaign, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders will celebrate 25 seasons of baseball for the franchise in NEPA. A big piece of that puzzle – the step-by-step unveiling of the club’s All-Time team leading up to the big reflective June 7 celebration. Players in each field are represented by a variety of interests, including success in SWB, Major League triumph, service time and, of course, fan favoritism. This week we examine the corner infield positions.
ALL-TIME TEAM FIRST BASEMAN – JON ZUBER
Often called Mr. Red Baron, Jon Zuber might not be the most decorated SWB product, but he is emphatically one of the most beloved players to pass through the region. After a month-long tournament style challenge hosted by the RailRiders in the offseason, the left-handed hitting Zuber reigned supreme in the Red Baron bracket challenge, bulldozing his way in upset fashion through Phillies cornerstone Ryan Howard, local connection Andy Ashby, world bleeping champion Chase Utley and a former IL MVP in the Flyin’ Hawaiian himself, Shane Victorino, in the championship round. Maybe UConn and Kentucky snuck a peek at that tournament before making their own unprecedented run – Zuber was the 14th-seed in the 16-name field. But while the committee positioned Zuber in the bracket’s lower tier, SWB’s faithful fans made their feelings boisterously known. Jon Zuber simply could not be ignored.
Through parts of five seasons (1995-99), Zuber called SWB his summer home. The longtime minor leaguer appeared in 554 games for SWB, 291 of which were spent manning the first base bag while donning the Red Barons’ uni. Zuber consistently made a conscious effort to represent the organization and region to the best of his ability. “I enjoy this place because the people support me tremendously,” he told Keith Groller of The Morning Call before his final Red Barons Opening Day in 1999. “I try to go out and play as hard as I can for them. I’m flattered that people think so highly of me. It’s nice to feel appreciated.” The former Cal Bear had his cups of coffee with Philadelphia, splitting time between parts of the 1996 and 1998 crusades between SWB and Veterans Stadium. Zuber hit a career .250 over 68 big league games and 136 at-bats. His first AB came on April 19, 1996 when the first baseman’s long-awaited odyssey through baseball’s back roads finally came to fruition as a pinch hitter for Phillies starting pitcher Rick Hunter. After nearly 1,600 professional at-bats, our own Jon Zuber’s dream was a reality – he was a Major Leaguer.
The 12th-round selection’s professional career came to a close at the conclusion of the 2002 season. With baseball still in his blood, the long-time fan favorite turned to his alma mater for his baseball fix, spending time with the University of California as an assistant hitting coach from 2004-09. Zuber still holds the all-time record for most walks recorded in SWB history (317), while residing in the franchise’s top five for most singles (424), extra-base hits (166) and on base percentage (.402).
ALL-TIME TEAM THIRD BASEMAN – GREG LEGG
Only one SWB player has ever had his number retired. That man, Greg Legg, cracks the list as the franchise’s all-time third bagger. Known more as a utility presence, Legg played 473 games during his time as a Red Baron from 1989-94 with a vast majority of those games seeing him man the hot corner (172). Legg still stands in the top 10 in the SWB records books for games played, runs scored (196), hits (402), sacrifice hits (22) at-bats (1,498) and total bags (506).
After chasing a dream for 13 minor league campaigns, Legg made just 14 appearances with the Phillies before playing his last game of professional baseball with SWB at the age of 34. Much like Zuber, Legg continues to chase his life-long journey of reaching the show, this time as a manager. After leading the Low-A Lakewood Blue Claws in their inaugural campaign, Legg has been bumped back up from hitting coach to skipper with the Phillies’ South Atlantic League affiliate for his 32nd season within the Phillies organization in 2014. Still a presence in the community, Legg annually hosts a fundraising dinner to provide NEPA high school baseball players with college scholarship funds. This past season that dinner was held at PNC Field.
So there you have it, Jon Zuber at first and Greg Legg at third. Two legends and two more pieces to the puzzle that is SWB’s All-Time Team. Make sure to check out the RailRiders’ official blog, Porcupines in Pinstripes, and the GuideRail at PNC Field for the next reveal Thursday, April 18.
Buffalo, N.Y. The Buffalo Bisons (7-5) may have derailed the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (7-6) Wednesday night, but in Thursday’s doubleheader, SWB stayed on track. Brian Gordon (1-1, 2.30) and Chase Whitley (1-1, 3.72) were sharp, combining to allow three base hits throughout the two games. The RailRiders offense supplied the thunder in a four-home-run contest, with two courtesy ofZoilo Almonte. The two different tales added up to a doubleheader sweep, as the RailRiders claimed game one,2-1, before finishing off the twinbill with a 7-2 win.
A night after combining for 24 base hits, the RailRiders and Bisons flipped the script in the first game. With veterans Gordon and Ricky Romero (0-0, 3.60) toeing the slab, runs proved scarce.
Gordon twirled 5.2 innings, giving up his first base hit in the fifth on a ground ball to left. While Romero’s lone blemish occurred in the RailRiders third.
SWB set the tone for the day early. Antoan Richardson led the third off with a walk. Carmen Angelini dropped a sacrifice bunt that moved Richardson to second, and the centerfielder then took third on a stolen base. Jose Pirela recorded his first RBI of the season, knocking a base hit to left to plate Richardson. The run gave the RailRiders the early lead, 1-0.
Gordon worked around four walks, including a leadoff free passes to begin the second and third. Gordon departed in the sixth in favor of Matt Daley. The RailRiders’ closer stranded an inherited runner by finishing the frame with a strikeout of Kevin Pillar. The strikeout by Daley was one of six Bisons to go down swinging in the final four innings.
Not to be outdone, Buffalo’s Romero was equally as good. The former Blue Jay tossed six innings, allowing just two base hits. After the RBI single by Pirela in the third, Romero retired 11 of his final 12 batters before exiting.
The Herd’s offense awoke in the seventh. Nolan added his second hit with a double to left. With Nolan on second, Chris Getz brought around the tying run on a single up the middle. The two hits in the inning doubled the Herd’s offensive output in the previous six innings.
After Daley stranded the winning run in the top of the seventh, right-hander Danny Burawa (2-0) began the eighth only find his own self-made troubles. Burawa worked out of a jam, after walking back-to-back batters to begin the inning. He then induced consecutive fly-ball outs by Matt Tuiasosopo and Pillar before striking out Ricardo Nanita to end the threat.
SWB broke the 1-1 deadlock with a run in the ninth. Ronnier Mustelier led off with a walk. After a sacrifice bunt by Austin Romine moved Mustelier to second, Angelini delivered on an RBI single up the middle for what proved to be the game-winning run.
Burawa earned the win, while Austin Bibens-Dirkx (0-1) was slated with a loss.
The RailRiders offense found its rhythm in game two, striking 13 base hits and four home runs. Flores singled to open the game. Kyle Drabek (1-1, 7.07) tried back-to-back pickoff attempts before the second try skipped away from first baseman, Jared Goedert. The throwing error by Drabek allowed Flores to move to third. Flores would eventually come around to score after a double by Pirela.
Corban Joseph and Almonte each added solo blasts to begin the second and third. After Almonte’s homerun in the third, Garcia followed with a double and scored on a single to left by Joseph. The RailRiders padded the lead with a home run in the fourth by Pirela, and Richardson added an RBI single to score Joseph in the fifth.
Whitley followed the template set by Gordon, tossing five strong innings. The five shutout frames by Whitley set the tone for the RailRiders relievers. Buffalo struggled offensively for much of the second tilt, scratching across single runs in the sixth and seventh.
The day was essentially done for Buffalo after Almonte added his second home run of the day, a blast to right field at the start of the seventhto cement the game. The lead proved to be too much to overcome for Buffalo as the RailRiders claimed the 7-2 triumph. The doubleheader sweep gave SWB its first road series win of the year.
The RailRiders return home for the first of an eight-game homestand at PNC Field Friday, April 18 at 7:05 p.m. SWB’s starter is TBA, while the IronPigs will toss right-hander Barry Enright (0-1, 6.52).John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on MyNetwork TV, while Jim Riley fills in on radio. The radio pregame show starts at 6:35 p.m. on NEPA Sports Radio – The GAME, Northeast PA’s largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM. For season ticket information, single-game tickets or to book a ballpark group outing, call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
Zoilo Almonte added the RailRiders‘ first multi-homerun game of the season.
SWB combined for six extra-base hits in game two after not hitting one in the first game.
The top three hitters in the RailRiders offense combined for three home runs and a double in game two.
ABOUT LAST NIGHT: Marcus Stroman held SWB’s offense in check while his offense pounded out eight runs on 13 hits as the RailRiders dropped last night’s series opener in Buffalo, 8-2. The RailRiders’ allowed a season-high run total and tied for their most lopsided loss thus far.
MOVING ON UP: Both of SWB’s recent losses to promotion, catcher John Ryan Murphy and infielder Scott Sizemore,got time in yesterday’s doubleheader sweep of the Cubs. Sizemore started both games at third base, while Murphy got the nod in the nightcap behind the plate. In game two, Sizemore had two hits and drove in one of the Yankees’ two scores in the 2-0 triumph. Murphy had a hit and caught Anthony Rizzo trying to steal second with a throw to the covering Derek Jeter.
IT FEELS LIKE THE FIRST TIME: With Sizemore in the bigs and Zelous Wheeler on the SWB DL, Adonis Garcia got the start at third base last night. On his still young stateside career, Garcia had only started on the infield once – a 2013 nod at second base in game two of a July 23 doubleheader versus Toledo. The balance of his career had come mostly in the outfield with a sprinkling of DH time. He started his Cuban National Series tenure at multiple infield positions, including third base, before his defection, but has played mostly outfield since including his initial time in Venezuela. Last night, in his first game action since hitting a homer in SWB’s home opener last Thursday, he played an error-free game and drove in the RailRiders’ first run with an eighth-inning single for the team’s only RBI.
SWING AND A MISS: Stroman whiffed nine over 5.1 innings as Buffalo amassed a dozen strikeouts in total. It made for the most whiffs by SWB as a team on the young year and the best 2014 showing by an individual hurler against NEPA’s squad. Stroman (1-1) secured the first Triple-A triumph of his blossoming career.
TOUGH TIME: SWB starter Chris Leroux walked the first man he faced in his first outing of the season. That man, Chris Getz, later came around to score. Ten men came to the dish in a four-run third that chased Leroux after allowing five runs on seven hits in 2.1 innings. It made for Leroux’s first stateside start since Aug. 27, 2012 while with Indianapolis – a win versus Columbus. He was 4-0 in seven starts that season with a 3.00 ERA.
ROAD WOES: SWB has not won consecutive road games since taking the first three at Louisville from July 26-28 last season. It has gone 8-18 (.308) away from PNC Field since that three-win spurt in the Bluegrass State. That includes three straight road losses from a sweep defeat at the hands of Rochester from April 8-9. That series sported Rochester’s first doubleheader sweep win since May 5, 2012 against Buffalo. The Red Wings completed a three-game sweep for the first time since dusting off Lehigh Valley in 2008 and posted their first three-game sweep of the New York Yankees’ top farm team since 2004.
CLIMBING UP THE CHARTS: Manager Dave Miley will be formally inducted into the IL’s Hall of Fame on June 7. But before then, he has another career milestone to notch. Miley enters today four wins short of tying and five wins short of passing SWB Red Barons manager Marc Bombard (1997-2004; 574-502) for the all-time wins lead in franchise history. Below is a year-by-year breakdown of Miley’s success with NEPA’s team.
DAVE MILEY – SWB MANAGERIAL RECORD
2007: 84-59 2008: 88-56 2009: 81-60 2010: 87-56
2011: 73-69 2012: 84-60 2013: 68-76 2014: 5-6
Buffalo, N.Y. -On a chilly night in Buffalo, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (5-6) offense went cold. Buffalo Bisons (7-3) starting pitcher Marcus Stroman (1-1) struck out nine batters, and the Bisons offense pounded out five extra-base hits, in an 8-2 thumping of the RailRiders Wednesday evening at Coca-Cola Field.
With Chris Leroux (0-1) making his first start of the season, Buffalo took advantage. Bisons second baseman Chris Getz led the first off with a walk and took second on a stolen base. Getz advanced to third on a Steve Tolleson single to left, before coming around to score on a Juan Francisco groundout. Leroux induced a double play ball to end the inning.
Buffalo’s lead swelled to five after the Bisons batted around in the third. Buffalo sent 10 men to the plate in the inning, with book-end plate appearances by Getz. The second baseman led the frame off with a single and came around to score on a Tolleson triple. With the score 2-0,third baseman Juan Francisco doubled home and scored on a Tuiasosopo line drive to left. Before the inning was over, centerfielder Kevin Pillar brought the final run around on a double off the outfield wall and moved to third on the relay throw.
Leroux, after facing six batters in the third inning, gave way to right-hander Yoshinori Tateyama. Tateyama walked his first batter before retiring Kratz and Getz via the strikeout to end the frame. Tateyama was one of four RailRider relievers to appear in the game.
After Stroman departed in the sixth, the offense for Buffalo added some more insurance. Tolleson reached on a one-out walk and the proceeded to steal second. Francisco’s second hit of night brought Tolleson around from second to score. A strikeout by Dan Johnson and Matt Tuiasosopo ended the Buffalo threat.
Two more runs crossed for Buffalo in the home half of the seventh. After a lead-off walk by Pillar, Jared Goedert reached on a fielder’s choice. Kratz provided a double to right and scored on a single to right by Carroll.
After eight base hits yielded no runs through seven innings, the RailRiders offense broke through in the eighth. Russ Canzler led the inning off with a walk and advanced to third after a Corban Joseph double to right. With runners at second and third, Adonis Garcia singled to plate Canzler from third. A double play ball by Ronnier Mustelier scored SWB’s final run, plating Joseph from third.
The RailRiders and Bisons will conclude their three-game series Thursday with the first game of a doubleheader at 12:05 p.m. Both contests are slated for seven innings. SWB will toss right-hander Brian Gordon (1-1, 3.60) opposite Buffalo left-hander Ricky Romero (0-0, 6.75). Right-hander Chase Whitley (0-1, 7.71) will go in game No. 2 against Kyle Drabek (1-0, 5.40) John Sadak will have the call on radio withAaron Berlin’s pregame coverage starting at 11:35 a.m. on NEPA Sports Radio – The GAME, Northeast PA’s largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM. The RailRiders return home on Friday, April 18 when the Lehigh Valley IronPigs visit PNC Field for a four-game series and eight-game homestand. For season ticket information, single-game tickets or to book a ballpark group outing, call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
It’s only April 16 and the RailRiders roster has already been in constant flux. In 10 games, 32 players have donned the SWB pinstripes through the first two weeks of the season. Here’s a rundown of some of the transactions you may have missed over the weekend.
The Yankees recently placed back-up receiver Francisco Cervelli on the club’s 60-day disabled list with a right hamstring strain. With Cervelli on the DL, the Yankees recalled SWB’s John Ryan Murphy to back up Brian McCann. In an additional move, New York selected the contract of third baseman Scott Sizemore and added him to the club’s 25-man roster. The two losses leave a gaping hole in the RailRiders’ attack; Sizemore hit .344 in the first 10 games of season, adding 11 hits and four extra-base knocks, while Murphy had been a presence behind the plate catching 46 innings for the club. Earlier in the week right-handed pitcher Shane Greene was optioned to Triple-A SWB. Greene was originally recalled by New York after Austin Romine was sent back to the RailRiders on April 9.
With the recent addition to the parent club’s roster, Jame Kleimann had a nice piece on NJ.com to help you learn a little more about Yanks latest callup in Murphy (LINK ). Here’s a nice piece about how Sizemore, after two major injuries, has worked his way back to the big leagues (LINK).
To make up for the loss of Sizemore and Murphy, catcher Francisco Arcia was transferred from Double-A Trenton and Jose Toussen was added from Advanced-A Tampa. Toussen was 5-for-9 in three contests for the baby bombers.
Arcia joins the RailRiders after beginning the season with Double-A Trenton and will serve as the primary backup behind Romine. In four starts with the Thunder, Arcia split time between first base and catching, receiving 10 of his 14 AB’s behind the dish. The sample size is small, but the longtime Yankees farmhand had hit .429 with two extra-base knocks to back up rising prospect Gary Sanchez.
For a copy of the RailRiders active roster, click HERE.
Rain and snow continues to plague the RailRiders season as another day of baseball was washed Tuesday in Buffalo.The RailRiders have had six game dates and eight total contests postponed due to weather on the young year. The club will play their regularly scheduled 6:05 p.m. affair Wednesday evening with pregame coverage on NEPA Sports Radio-The GAME with Aaron Berlin will beginning at 5:35 p.m. RailRiders play-by-play voice John Sadak joins the broadcast beginning with first pitch at 6:05 p.m. To listen to tonight’s game, click HERE.
Thursday’s getaway day now means a doubleheader. The twinbill will begin at 12:05 p.m., with the fourth game of the series moved to July 2.
Moosic, Pa. – Ramon Flores provided four hits and four runs scored, and the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (5-5) offence pounded out a season-high 15 hits en route to a 7-1 series-clinching win over the Syracuse Chiefs (3-6) Sunday afternoon at PNC Field. Four different RailRiders provided multi-hit afternoons, including a three RBI day by SWB third baseman, Scott Sizemore, while three RailRiders pitchers combined on the afternoon to hold the Syracuse offense to just two base knocks.
Flores set the tone early, leading the RailRiders first frame off with a double down the right-field line. After a Sizemore groundout, Zoilo Almonte singled through the hole in center to advance Flores to third, giving SWB runners at first and third and one out. After ending Saturday night’s twin bill with a walk-off RBI, Russ Canzler, came through for SWB again, knocking a groundball through the left side of the infield to score Flores to give the RailRiders the early advantage, 1-0.
The RailRiders would add to the lead in the second after John Ryan Murphy doubled on a deep fly to centerfield. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre catcher, Austin Romine, followed with a walk and Antoan Richardson dropped a sacrifice bunt back to the pitcher Omar Poveda that moved Romine and Murphy to second and third. After a Carmen Angelini struck out for the second out of the inning, Flores walked on three straight pitches to load the bases. With Sizemore stepping to the plate, the big right-handed hitter delivered on a two-out RBI single up the middle to that plated Murphy and Romine. The final run of the frame would come in the form of another base hit by Almonte, a single to left that brought Flores around to score, marking the second of four runs scored by the RailRiders right-fielder.
The RailRiders plated runs in each of their first five at-bats, including single tallies in the fourth and fifth. The lone Chief run came in the fourth inning after Chiefs second baseman, Will Rhymes, bounced a ball to SWB first baseman Canzler. A throwing error by the NEPA product allowed Rhymes to reach safely to give the Chiefs their second base runner of the afternoon. A groundout by Brock Peterson moved Rhymes to second, before eventually taking third on a wild pitch. Jhonatan Solano would pick up his teammate, knocking a ground ball to the right side that brought around Rhymes for the only Chief score of the day.
Bruce Billings, after laboring through his previous start against the Rochester Red Wings, tossed seven complete frames, allowing just a single hit along the way. The seven inning appearance by Billings marked the first of the season for RailRiders pitchers. After retiring his first four batters face in order, Billings needed just 90 pitches, facing only 25 batters throughout the evening to work his way through the Chiefs lineup.
Danny Burawa and Mark Montgomery each tossed an inning apiece, combining for three strikeouts between the two.
The RailRiders will begin a four-game road trip Monday evening at 6:05 p.m. when the club visits the Buffalo Bisons. The RailRiders will summon upon right-hander Chase Whitley (0-0, 7.71), while Buffalo elects to send Marcus Earl Stroman (0-1, 1.80) to the bump. John Sadak will have the call on radio with pregame coverage starting at 5:35 p.m. on NEPA Sports Radio – The GAME, Northeast PA’s largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM. For season ticket information, single-game tickets or to book a ballpark group outing, call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
Scott Sizemore’s three RBI day tied Carmen Angelini for the most in a game this year
Ramon Flores’ triple in the fourth was his second of the season.
Eight of the nine RailRiders hitters recorded at least one base hit
The top three batters in the RailRiders order combined to go 9-for-14
- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! -
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DOUBLE DIPS: Through the clubs first three series, the RailRiders have played three doubleheaders with four postponed dates. SWB, after last night’s double header split, are now 0-2-1 in twin bills this season.
PROVIDING THE FIREWORKS: NEPA product, Russ Canzler, helped ignite the fireworks Saturday night at PNC Field. With teammate Zoilo Almonte standing on second, Canzler smacked an RBI base hit to deep centerfield to score Almonte. The hit gave the RailRiders their first extra-inning victory of the season, while securing the doubleheader split.
BOMBS AWAY: Adonis Garcia blasted the RailRiders first home run of the 2014 campaign, adding a dinger to left on Thursday night. Saturday, fellow teammate Zoilo Almonte mashed his first homer of the year. After not hitting a home run through the first six contest, SWB has now hit home runs in back-to-back games.
CAN’T TOUCH THIS: With seven of the RailRiders first 10 contests scheduled against the Syracuse Chiefs, the RailRiders have claimed four of the first six outings against the divisional foe. The lone losses have come against the right-hander, Taylor Hill. Hill, in two starts against SWB, has tossed 13.0 IP, yielding way to a single run while giving up five base hits.
GUARDIAN ANGEL: Carmen Angelini would be happy if he never had to face another team. In five games this season against the Syracuse Chiefs, Angelini has belted three doubles, including a 5-11 mark against Chiefs pitching. Angelini was one of the lone two base hits against the Chiefs in G1 of yesterday’s double dip.
DALEY ROUTINE: After a rough outing against Rochester, RailRiders reliever Matt Daley came up big for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the closing moments of the yesterday’s 2-1 win in G2. After relieving Preston Claiborne in the sixth inning with the bases loaded. Daley fanned the next two batters to get the RailRiders to the bottom of the frame unscathed. Daley recorded four strikeouts on the night to tie reliever Danny Burawa for the most K’s by a SWB reliever this year.
DON’T HIT ME THERE : Scranton/Wilkes-Barre continues to search for a solid everyday DH. The struggles have been well documented as through the first nine games of the season, RailRiders’ DH’s are hitting a combined .076 with just two hits and zero extra-base hits.
BILL ‘EM LATER: RailRiders starting pitcher, Bruce Billing, will make his third start of the season, his second against Syracuse. Billings took the ball for game one of the 2014 campaign, tossing five complete innings against the Chiefs and allowing a run. The start marked the right-hander’s first in the International League after spending the last three years in the Pacific Coast League.
SMOOTH CRIMINALS: It was just another day at the office for RailRiders base runners. Ramon Flores (1) swiped his first bag of the season, while Almonte (1) took his first of the season. SWB has now swiped three bags in the series.
OY: Double headers have not been kind to RailRiders third baseman, Scott Sizemore. In the second game of double dips this year Sizemore is 0-for-9 with three walks and 7K’s.
Moosic, Pa. – With the game tied and his team in need of a lift, hometown NEPA product, Russ Canzler, provided the fireworks Saturday night in 2-1 extra-inning walk-off win. The late single lifted the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (4-5) over the Syracuse Chiefs (3-6) in front of an announced attendance of 5,011 on Saturday night at PNC Field. The RBI-scoring base hit plated left fielder Zoilo Almonte from second, securing the doubleheader split for the RailRiders.
After laboring offensively for much of the evening, SWB caught their first break of the night in game two of Saturday night’s twin bill. After retiring nine of ten batters faced, Chiefs starting pitcher, Josh Roenicke, departed the game with the score even at 0-0. From there the RailRiders offense breathed a sigh of relief as Christian Garcia came in relief of Roenicke. Garcia began the fourth with a walk to SWB designated hitter, Scott Sizemore, on four-straight pitches. Almonte then struck what appeared to be a double play ball to Chiefs first baseman, Jose Lozada. Lozada fielded the ball cleanly and raced it to first to secure the out and, with Sizemore hustling to second, Lozada’s relay throw bounced off Sizemore’s back, giving the RailRiders a runner in scoring position. After a Canzler groundout moved Sizemore to third, Chiefs catcher, Jeff Howell, allowed a ball to go past his mitt to score Sizemore. The run marked the first lead of the night for SWB, 1-0.
Syracuse avoided a shutdown inning, claiming the tying run after Brain Goodwin reached on a single. After a balk by Caleb Cotham (0-0, 3.68) allowed Goodwin to trot to second, Lozada made up for the missed double play with an RBI single to right that brought Goodwin around to score.
The two clubs remained scoreless for the next two innings, mixing and matching pitchers along the way. Syracuse relied upon the services of four different arms, while SWB need two to close out Saturday night’s affair. The biggest moment came in the top of the seventh inning after right-handed pitcher Preston Claiborne (0-0, 0.00) pitching in relief ofCotham, loaded the bases with an intentional walk. RailRiders manager Dave Miley, summoned upon Bucknell product, Matt Daley (1-0, 6.75), to finish off the frame. With the go-ahead run at third and the bases full, Daley struck out his next two batters faced to close out the inning, thwarting the Syracuse threat. Daley recorded four strikeouts in his two complete innings of work the set the stage for Canzler in the eighth.
After Sizemore struck out to begin the home half of the eighth, Almonte followed with a single to centerfield before taking second base to setup Canzler’s game-winning hit.
Daley would go on to earn the win, his first of the year, while Manny Delcarmen (0-1, 2.45) was slated with the loss.
Syracuse took game one of the double dip Saturday night in 7-1 fashion, combining for 12 base hits, including a four-run third inning that saw the Chiefs send every man to the plate. Eury Perez took first on a hit by pitch before proceeding to swipe second base, and Will Rhymes smacked an RBI single to left field that scored Perez for the first run of the game. Back-to-back RBI doubles to right field by Brock Peterson and Zach Walters followed to extend the Chiefs lead, 3-0. After two brief mound visits, starting pitcher Brian Gordon stayed in the game, allowing the final blow of the inning in the form of an RBI single by outfielder Goodwin, that plated the fourth run of the frame.
The lone RailRider run came in the fourth when Almonte blasted his first homerun of the year over the left field wall. The home run occurred with nobody on base and the brought the Chiefs lead to a 4-1 deficit. The dinger was the second for the RailRiders in as many games after not hitting a home run through their first six contests and hit broke a string of 11-straight batters retired by Syracuse starter Hill to begin the game.
The Chiefs later added to their cushion by riding a three-run seventh on their way to a 7-2 victory, giving Hill his second win against SWB this year, while slating Gordon with the loss.
The RailRiders will conclude their four-game tilt Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. when the club hosts the Chiefs. Right-hander, Bruce Billings (0-0, 5.00) will toe the rubber for SWB, while the righty Omar Poveda (0-0, 0.00) gets the nod for the Chiefs. Voice the of the RailRiders, John Sadak, along with Aaron Berlin, will have the call on radio. Pregame coverage begins at 12:35 p.m. on NEPA Sports Radio – The GAME, Northeast PA’s largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM. For season ticket information, single-game tickets or to book a ballpark group outing, call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
Almonte combined for three hits on the evening, including a home run in the fourth inning of game one
Carmen Angelini recorded his third extra-base hit of the season against the Chiefs.
- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! -