Don’t Call it a Comeback; Pirela Drives in Four in Win
Moosic, Pa. – The good times kept on rolling for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) Tuesday night at PNC Field. Jose Pirela collected three hits and drove in four while falling a double shy of the cycle and the RailRiders (64-66) plated three-runs in the ninth inning in a 6-5 win over the Syracuse Chiefs (Washington Nationals). The win extended SWB’s current run of success to five-straight games and also improved the RailRiders to 10-5 this season against Syracuse.
Pirela provided the theatrics, belting his IL-leading 10th triple of the season on a two-out two-strike pitch against closer Rafael Martin that cleared the bases and gave the RailRiders the 6-5 win. Prior to Pirela’s at-bat, Martin had issued two walks and allowed an infield hit to Scott Sizemore to load the bases.
A man that wasn’t on the roster when the day began received the start for Syracuse. Omar Poveda began the game and the RailRiders tagged him for three early runs. Zoilo Almonte brought about the game’s first run with his team-leading 67th RBI of the year. The crooked number was hung when Rob Refsnyder danced home from third on catcher Sandy Leon’s passed ball, 2-0. Pirela’s majestic lead off home run in the third made it 3-0.
Syracuse responded with five unanswered runs, plating its first two runs against SWB starter Zach Nuding in the fifth. Three base hits opened the frame, with Josh Johsnon’s rip plating the Chiefs’ first run. Syracuse brought the game to within a run on Will Rhymes’ sacrifice fly. An RBI by Leon tied it in the sixth and Tyler Moore’s two-run tatter off Diego Moreno meant a 5-3 deficit.
Jim Miller (6-3) was one of three SWB pitchers to toss Tuesday night; he claimed the win in relief. Miller worked two scoreless frames and struck out out one. Rafeal Martin (0-1) blew his first save at Triple-A, facing six batters in the ninth inning, walking two and allowing two hits in the loss.
The RailRiders continue the short two-game run at PNC Field with the series finale against Syracuse Wednesday, August 20 at 7:05 p.m. The RailRiders will toss right-handed pitcher Bryan Mitchell (4-1, 2.40) while the Chiefs spin the right-hander A.J. Cole (4-0, 2.87). John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on radio with the pregame show beginning 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
Jose Pirela’s triple in the ninth inning gave the RailRiders their 10th walk-off victory of the season and second against the Syracuse Chiefs. The last time the RailRiders ended a game with a run in the ninth inning was when the club swept a twinbill against the Rochester RedWings (Minnesota Twins) August 10.
Pirela’s triple also meant the end of Syracuse closer Rafael Martin’s impressive scoreless innings streak. The reliever allowed his first earned run in his last 50 innings pitched, a streak that lasted 29 games and spanned his tenure with Double-A Harrisburg and Syracuse.
The RailRiders have won their last five games, the club’s longest such streak since a five-game run against the Charlotte Knights (Chicago White Sox) and Gwinnett Braves (Atlanta Braves) from July 20-24. The RailRiders last six-game run also marked the longest of the season, when the RailRiders claimed successive games against the Noforlk Tides (Baltimore Orioles), Indianapolis Indians (Pittsburgh Pirates) and Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) from May 4-9.
- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! -