Porcupine Points: May 28 at Louisville
BLOWN AWAY: Go figure. Play some games at Louisville Slugger Field against a team nicknamed the Bats and you find your swing. The RailRiders pounded out 16 hits with seven going for extra bases in an 11-4 thumping of Louisville on Tuesday. After scoring six runs in four games on their recent 1-3 homestand, the RailRiders have tallied 26 scores on 40 hits between the road trip’s first two affairs.
FOR COMPARISON’S SAKE: The RailRiders’ 26 runs through two games on this road trip match their total from the 10 prior contests combined. The franchise had not totaled 26 runs over consecutive games since July 25 and 26 in 2011. In those games, a 15-1 win versus Syracuse was followed by an 11-2 defeat of the Bisons in Buffalo. Those SWB Yankees had 31 combined hits between the two games. No SWB team had scored 26 or more runs in back-to-back road games since at least 2004.
TRY THIS ON FOR SIZE: Scott Sizemore fell a home run short of the cycle on a 3-for-6 night. After going 1-for-20 (.050) on the Lehigh Valley/Pawtucket road trip from May 13-20, Sizemore has gone 10-for-25 (.400).
OFF THE SCHNEID: Dean Anna snapped an 0-for-23 funk with hits in each of his last three at-bats. In his first game in over a week, Corban Joseph slammed two extra-base hits and drove in four runs. He joined current New York Yankee Zoilo Almonte as the lone RailRiders to enjoy a four-RBI game this season. Joseph last drove in four runs on Aug. 19, 2012 at Rochester. He registered a career-best five RBIs on May 30, 2010. The then-Tampa Yankee went 4-for-5 with two home runs at Bradenton. Austin Romine entered the game hitting .198 with a .274 OBP. He reached base safely four times. The catcher went 2-for-3, doubled once, walked twice (once intentionally) and scored a pair of runs.
LET’S GET HIM ON: Antoan Richardson was the lone man in the nine that failed to hit. But he reached on a walk, a bruise and a squeeze bunt/sacrifice that scored Joseph from third in the seventh. He also stole two bases to lift his season-high total to a team-best 15. He has not been caught stealing in 38 attempts since May 28, 2013 against Lehigh Valley when he was a Rochester Red Wing. Richardson ranks second in the IL in steals and fourth in OBP (.402).
HEATING UP: Jose Pirela has hit safely in 10 of 11, going 19-for-46 (.413). More than half of that run has come on the road where he is a .326 hitter. Ramon Flores has hit safely in 12 of his last 13 and leads SWB with 26 walks and 15 doubles.
ON A ROLL: Kyle Roller blasted an opposite-way two-run homer on a two-hit night. With his Double-A time, he leads the Yankees’ farm with his composite .348 average. He also ranks second in homers (12) and is tied for third in RBIs (31).
OFF THE RAILS: The RailRiders had nearly as many extra-base hits (7) and hits with men in scoring position (6) as Louisville had in the game (8)…The RailRiders have won a season-best five straight road games…SWB has gone 6-0 against IL West teams…It is two games into playing 20 of 24 against IL West squads…The RailRiders’ season-long team batting average has shot up 10 points (.255-.265) based on their 49th and 50th games of the season…Before the game, the New York Yankees announced that SWB southpaw Matt Tracy was sent to Double-A Trenton…He started for the Thunder on Tuesday and allowed one run on six hits in 6.2 innings for his fifth Double-A win at Reading…Two Yankees prospects won weekly league honors on Tuesday…Dante Bichette, Jr. was named the Florida State League Hitter of the Week with Adv.-A Tampa…He hit .357/.406/.714 on a 10-for-28 week with three home runs and 13 RBIs…Trenton’s Jeremy Bleich claimed Eastern League Pitcher of the Week accolades…The 2008 first-round pick out of Stanford struck out a career-best 10 against Richmond in seven scoreless innings…Louisville fell to 6-16 (.273) against the IL North…The Bats are 18-11 (.621) against teams in the West and South…Position player Kristopher Negron played shortstop and center field in the game for the Bats before making his pro pitching debut with a scoreless ninth inning.