Game # 134 SWB 4 – BUF 3 (11 Innings)
DATE: August 23, 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mesa the Hero with 11th Inning Homer for SWB’s Eighth Straight Win
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre picks up 4-3 win and has “Magic Number” reduced to five
Buffalo, NY – Melky Mesa led off the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees (78-56) 11th inning with his sixth homer of the season taking Buffalo Bisons (62-71) C.J. Nitkowski (LP, 0-1) over the wall in right center field for the winning margin as the Yankees downed the Bisons 4-3 in 11 innings for their second consecutive extra innings win. The win, the eighth straight for the Yankees, is the team’s longest winning streak since SWB won eight straight from August 18-27, 2010.
Fred Lewis led off the game for the Bisons with a double off the wall in left center for a two base hit on the first pitch of the game thrown by starter Mike O’Connor. Brad Emaus followed up the double with a single to center field scoring Lewis for a 1-0 Bisons lead.
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the third inning on the first of the three RBI’s of the night by Corban Joseph. Chris Dickerson doubled to the gap in right center off Bisons starter Armando Rodriguez and came home on Joseph’s RBI single to right tying the game up.
Buffalo scored the next two runs off O’Connor picking up a single run in the fourth inning and another single run in the sixth. Zach Lutz drew a leadoff walk to open the fourth inning and was forced out at second base on Josh Satin’s pop up that was initially lost in the lights at first base by Kosuke Fukudome. After the ball dropped on the infield, Fukudome alertly threw to second forcing Lutz for the first out of the inning. Matt Tuiasosopo singled Satin to second base and during the at bat to Josh Rodriguez both runners moved up on an O’Connor wild pitch. Rodriguez’s sacrifice fly to center gave the Bisons a 2-1 lead. Tuiasosopo gave Buffalo a two run cushion at 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning with a two out solo homer over the wall in centerfield.
O’Connor’s night was finished after 6.0 innings allowing three runs on seven hits with two walks and four strikeouts. The Buffalo starter Rodriguez who was called up from Double-A Binghamton earlier in the day, made his Triple-A debut in place of schedule starter Collin McHugh who had been called up to New York to start for the Mets. Rodriguez lasted 4.1 innings allowing one run on three hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre tied the game in the top of the seventh with a two out, two run rally off Buffalo reliever Garrett Olson. With two out, Pena singled to left to start the rally and moved to third on Dickerson’s double into the right field corner. With second and third and two out Joseph lined a single over the head of Rodriguez at short at out into left center scoring both runners and tying the game at 3-3.
The game stayed tied at 3-3 until the top of the 11th inning when Mesa launched his sixth homer of the season over the wall in right centerfield off Nitkowski. Mesa had earlier extended his season best hit streak to nine games with a fourth inning double.
Cory Wade (WP, 2-0) worked 2.0 scoreless innings to pick up the win as the Yankees reduced their “magic number” to clinch the IL North to five with the win over Buffalo and Pawtucket’s loss to Charlotte.
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre concludes five straight games in Buffalo with the final game of a three game road series on Thursday night with a 7:05 PM first pitch from Coca-Cola Field. Right hander John Maine (5-6, 5.94 ERA) makes the start for the Yankees. Buffalo will counter with right hander Jeurys Familia (8-8, 4.65 ERA)