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Long & Co. Shut Out PawSox

Starter Tosses Career-Long 7.2 Innings

 Pawtucket, R.I.Jaron Long (3-3) tossed a career-best 7.2 innings on the front end as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) defeated the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) on Memorial Day Monday, 2-0. SWB (23-23) notched its fourth shutout of the year while Pawtucket (24-22) received its fifth blanking of 2015.

Long did not allow a base runner until Jackie Bradley, Jr. walked to begin the fourth. A double play thereafter meant he had still faced the minimum before Travis Shaw bunted for a hit, the first allowed by Long, with one out in the fifth. In his ninth start of the season, Long allowed three hits, walked three and whiffed four on 97 pitches (63 strikes).

He was in line for the win thanks to Mason Williams’ run-scoring single in the second and Nick Noonan’s sac fly in the seventh. Pawtucket starter Henry Owens (2-3) allowed just one score over six innings to suffer the loss.

Tyler Webb aided Long’s efforts by stranding an inherited runner when he struck out his fellow South Carolina alumnus, Bradley, to end the eighth. Jose Ramirez fired a scoreless ninth for his team-best sixth save.

The RailRiders continue the three-game series and road trip at 7:05 p.m. on Tuesday. Right-hander Joel De La Cruz (3-0, 3.42) will face fellow right-hander Jess Todd (1-0, 3.86).

The RailRiders return home on Friday, May 29 to face the Norfolk Tides (Baltimore Orioles) in the first of a six-game homestand. It will sport Friday Fireworks presented by Jack Williams Tire & Kumho Tire, a Fit Track School Day thanks to Odak and Strike Out Stroke Night presented by Geisinger Health Systems. For tickets or more information, call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit the team’s website, www.swbrailriders.com.

OFF THE RAILS:

Rob Refsnyder went 0-for-4 as his on-base streak ended at 25 games.

Jaron Long has won three of his last four starts, posting a 0.48 ERA in the victories.

Neither team registered an extra-base hit.

While SWB went 1-for-8 with men in scoring position, Pawtucket registered an 0-for-2 showing.

Earlier in the day, former RailRider Slade Heathcott hit his first MLB home run while southpaw Jacob Lindgren made his big league debut. 

– SWB RailRiders –

SWB Game Notes 5-25-15

CLICK HERE for the May 25 edition of the RailRiders’ game notes. CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call live with John Sadak and Darren Headrick. Pregame coverage starts at 5:45 p.m.

SILENCED BY THE SECOND: Down nine runs at one point, the RailRiders fought back to bring the tying run to the plate in the ninth. The comeback fell short, however, in a 13-10 loss to the Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays). Sunday’s effort tied or set season-high marks for runs and hits allowed in a game and for runs allowed in an inning after a seven-run second.

YOU DOWN WITH OBP?: Rob Refsnyder walked in the opening inning to extend the IL’s best on-base streak of the year to 25 games. His run started in game two of the April 25 doubleheader versus Pawtucket. In that time, he has hit .347 while posting an OBP of .426 and 14 of his 17 RBIs. Buffalo’s Matt Hague also has a 25-gamer currently that began on April 29.

STONE COLD MASON: Mason Williams finished a homer shy of the cycle. In his fourth career Triple-A game, the Pawtucket native went 4-for-5 with a double, a triple and three runs scored. The outfielder lived in Pawtucket until he was 13 years old. His father, Derwin, drew interest from the Reds after his college days at New Mexico, but followed a path to football and saw time in 42 games at wide receiver for the New England Patriots from 1985-87 (14 rec., 228 yards, 0TD). Baseball was in the blood even a generation earlier. Mason’s great uncle (grandfather’s brother), Walt “No Neck” Williams, played Major League Baseball from 1964-75 with the Houston Colt .45’s (1964), Chicago White Sox (1967-72), Cleveland Indians (1973) and New York Yankees (1974-75). He later worked as the White Sox first base coach (1988) and managed in the minor leagues including a two-year tour with a team Mason later played for, the Charleston RiverDogs (1993-94). Walt’s last career big league game came versus Boston (Sept. 22, 1975).

PITCHING PROBLEMS: Starter Matt Tracy (0-2) was hit hard in the loss. The lefty allowed seven runs on six hits in 1.2 innings. His successor, Eric Wooten, gave up another six scores on nine hits including four homers over his 5.1 frames.

SIMPSON SIR, SECTOR 7G: Wooten became the first SWB hurler to allow four homers in a game since Bryan Mitchell surrendered four at Charlotte on July 17, 2014. It has only happened two other times in the RailRiders era and all three total times before Sunday it had occurred on the road: Caleb Cotham on May 19, 2013 at Columbus; and Brett Marshall on June 2, 2013 at Durham.

WHAT GOES UP: After a season-best five-game winning streak, Dave Miley‘s RailRiders have lost five of six to fall back under .500. The team had not owned a losing mark since it was 17-18 after the first win of the five-game run May 14.

ARE YOU TOO GOOD FOR YOUR HOME?!: The RailRiders stand five games below .500 at PNC Field (11-16) and four games over on the road (11-7). The team has hit .279 on the road compared to a .247 mark at home. On the road, SWB has scored 90 runs in 18 games (5.0/game). At home, the squad has plated 90 runs in 27 games (3.3/game). The pitching has performed better at home (3.40 ERA) than outside of Moosic (4.03). No IL team has a better road winning percentage than the RailRiders (.611) and no IL squad has more home losses than SWB (16).

RUNNING OF THE BULLS: Durham bested SWB for the third time in as many tries. The RailRiders had outscored the Bulls 30-11 in claiming the first five clashes. Even with yesterday’s setback, the RailRiders outhit Durham .270-.251 and owned the better ERA at 3.24 against the Bulls’ 4.94 mark. SWB posted its first season-series victory over Durham since the 2012 squad went 5-3.

MEANWHILE, IN THE BRONX: Earlier today, Slade Heathcott slugged his first career big league home run, a two-run job off of Greg Holland in the seventh inning. Southpaw Jacob Lindgren also appeared in relief for his big league debut  and became the first Yankees’ draft pick to make his MLB debut within one year of being drafted since Deion Sanders, a 30th-round pick in 1988, debuted on May 31, 1989 versus Seattle. Lindgren struck out two over the game’s final two innings. He did not allow a hit or a run in the team’s 14-1 blowout of Kansas City.

RailRiders Can’t Overcome Disastrous Second

 Moosic, PA – Down nine runs at one point, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) fought back to bring the tying run to the plate in the ninth. The comeback fell short, however, in a 13-10 loss to the Durham Bulls. After winning the first five meetings, the RailRiders (22-23) dropped the final three outings to the Bulls (24-22).

Matt Tracy (0-2) was hit hard in the loss. The left-hander allowed seven runs on six hits in 1.2 innings. Scott Diamond (4-2) tossed five innings to earn the victory. He allowed five runs, three earned, on eight hits. Jhan Marinez recorded the final out for his first save.

Ramon Flores tallied the initial run of the game with his first double in the opening frame. Durham responded with a seven-run second to chase Tracy from the game. The Bulls built a 9-1 lead in the third when Allan Dykstra and Richie Shaffer clubbed back-to-back homers off reliever Eric Wooten.

Flores tried to spark the SWB offense in the bottom of the third by stroking his second double of the day. The left fielder scored when Rob Refsnyder reached on a throwing error by shortstop Taylor Motter. Austin Romine cut the score to 9-3 with a solo shot to left in the fourth.

In the fifth, J.P. Arencibia homered to left and the Bulls scored two more on hits by Leonardo Reginatto and Motter to push the advantage to 12-3. The RailRiders responded with two in their half of the fifth on another throwing error by Motter and an RBI-single from Kyle Roller.

Shaffer and Tyler Austin swapped solo home runs in the seventh and eighth innings respectively before SWB started their final push in the ninth.

Against reliever Andy Oliver, Mason Williams tripled for his fourth hit of the day. The center fielder finished a home run shy of the cycle. Flores and Roller sandwiched a strikeout with walks. Romine singled home Williams and Austin followed with a run-producing hit. Now trailing 13-8, Jonathan Galvez reached on a force out at second to plate another run.

Marinez replaced Oliver, but immediately surrendered a single to Rob Segedin that scored Romine. Nick Noonan nearly tied the game on a deep drive to right that hooked foul. Marinez struck him out on a foul tip the next pitch to seal the game.

The RailRiders begin a three-game series at Pawtucket on Monday evening.  Right-hander Jaron Long (2-3, 5.18) opposes southpaw Henry Owens (2-2, 3.19). First pitch at McCoy Stadium is set for 6:15 p.m. For tickets or more information, call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit the team’s website,  www.swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders –

SWB Game Notes 5-24-15

CLICK HERE for the May 24 edition of the RailRiders’ game notes. CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call live with John Sadak and Darren Headrick. Pregame coverage starts at 12:35 p.m.

THE BULLS STRIKE BACK: Not so long ago, in a ballpark that’s actually quite nearby, the RailRiders’ early-season dominance over the Durham Bulls continued to erode in a 4-2 loss on Saturday. After winning the first five meetings, the RailRiders dropped their second straight decision to the Bulls at PNC Field. The Bulls now threaten to claim the four-game series with a win today.

WHAT GOES UP: After a season-best five-game winning streak, Dave Miley‘s RailRiders have lost four of five to fall back to .500. The team has not owned a losing mark since it was 17-18 after the first win of the five-game run on May 14.

ARE YOU TOO GOOD FOR YOUR HOME?!: The RailRiders stand four games below .500 at PNC Field (11-15) and four games over on the road (11-7). The team has hit .279 on the road compared to a .242 mark at home. On the road, SWB has scored 90 runs in 18 games (5.0/game). At home, the squad has plated 80 runs in 26 games (3.1/game). The pitching has performed better at home with a 3.08 ERA against a 4.03 mark outside of Moosic. No IL team has a better road winning percentage than the RailRiders (.611) and no IL squad has more home losses than SWB’s 15.

WALK ON: Starter Bryan Mitchell (2-4) overcame a season-high-tying four walks to post a quality start, but suffered his second loss in three starts. He also walked four in his prior outing, a May 18 nod versus Charlotte. Mitchell fell to 1-3 in six starts at PNC Field despite a 2.30 ERA and a .227 batting average against. His run support totals in his three losses: 1, 1, 2.

LET’S GET READY TO RUMBELOW: Reliever Nick Rumbelow fired the final three innings. After allowing a pair of hits to begin his outing, he retired the last eight men he faced in succession including three strikeouts.

THE BULLS’ MATADOR: Durham starter Matt Buschmann (4-3) faced one over the minimum during his seven innings thanks to three double plays. He allowed two hits, walked two and struck out six on 89 pitches (52 strikes). He has faced the RailRiders three times in his career (two starts) and has gone 1-0 with a save and a 0.66 ERA. The RailRiders have hit .114 against him while he has logged a 5:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

RUNNING OF THE BULLS: Durham bested SWB for the second time in as many tries. The RailRiders had outscored the Bulls 30-11 in claiming the first five clashes. Even with last night’s setback, the RailRiders have outhit Durham .258-.230 and own the better ERA at 2.05 against the Bulls’ 4.52 mark. SWB is already assured of its first season-series victory over Durham since the 2012 squad went 5-3. Last night’s loss erased any change for the team to tie the 2008 unit’s 7-1 mark as the best ever recorded by a Yankees-affiliated SWB squad against Durham. That season’s SWB Yankees also defeated the Bulls in the Governors’ Cup championship series including a 20-2 blowout in the clinching Game 4.

YOU DOWN WITH OBP?: Rob Refsnyder singled in the ninth to extend the IL’s best on-base streak of the year to 24 games. His run started in game two of the April 25 doubleheader versus Pawtucket. In that time, he has hit .361 while posting an OBP of .436 and 14 of his 17 RBIs. Buffalo’s Matt Hague also has a 24-gamer currently that began on April 29.

OFF THE RAILS: Mason Williams notched his second Triple-A hit and his first RBI at the level in the eighth inning…He had one of the two hits for the top four hitters in SWB’s lineup which went a collective 2-for-15…Cole Figueroa drove in the RailRiders’ other run on a two-hit night…Kyle Roller walked and scored on an 0-for-3 night with two strikeouts…He has gone 3-for-17 on the homestand with nine strikeouts.

The Bulls Strike Back

Moosic, PA – Not so long ago, in a ballpark that’s actually quite close, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders’ early season dominance over the Durham Bulls continued to erode in a 4-2 loss on Saturday night. After winning the first five meetings, the RailRiders (22-22) dropped their second straight decision to the Bulls (23-22) at PNC Field. The Bulls now threaten to claim the four-game series with a win on Sunday.

Matt Buschmann (4-3) held the RailRiders at bay for seven innings, scattering two hits and a pair of walks. The right-hander struck out six. Bryan Mitchell (2-4) suffered the defeat, allowing three runs on seven hits across six frames. He walked four and fanned four. Ronald Belisario earned his eighth save with a scoreless ninth.

The two clubs marched through the first four innings scoreless before the Bulls tallied three runs in the fifth. Corey Brown doubled, Luke Maile walked and Leonardo Reginatto singled to load the bases. Taylor Motter singled home Brown and a double played produced another run for a 2-0 lead. Eugenio Velez made it 3-0 with a single before Mitchell could escape the inning.

Against reliever Nick Rumbelow, Motter singled, stole second a moved to third on a hit by Elmore in the seventh inning. He scored on a double play to push the Bulls’ lead to 4-0. Rumbelow settled in to pitch three innings, allowing a run on two hits with three strikeouts. The right-hander retired the final eight batters he faced.

SWB rallied against Durham’s bullpen in the eighth. Tyler Austin singled off reliever Jordan Norberto and Kyle Roller worked a walk to chase the left-hander. Jim Miller allowed a run-scoring singles to Cole Figueroa and Mason Williams that trimmed the deficit in half.

Rob Refsnyder extended his on-base streak to 24 games with a single to open the ninth. Belisario dug in, however, and retired the final three hitters to secure Durham’s victory.

The RailRiders, with the season series already secured, face the Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) for the final time on Sunday afternoon.  Left-hander Matt Tracy (0-1, 4.84) opposes southpaw Scott Diamond (3-2, 3.77). First pitch at PNC Field is set for 1:05 p.m. For tickets or more information, call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit the team’s website,  www.swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders –

SWB Game Notes 5-23-15

CLICK HERE for the May 23 edition of the RailRiders’ game notes. CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call live with John Sadak and Darren Headrick. Pregame coverage starts at 6:35 p.m.

ONE OF THOSE DAYS: The RailRiders fell to the Durham Bulls at PNC Field on Friday night, 4-1.

DAY BY DAVIES: Starter Kyle Davies settled for a no-decision after five innings of one-run ball. He started the season 2-1 after three starts despite a 7.43 ERA. In four starts since, Davies is 0-2 and the team 1-3 even though his ERA over that span sits at 3.13.

BAD DAY: Reliever Danny Burawa (1-1) issued a career-high-tying four walks over his 1.1 innings. He allowed two unearned runs for his first loss since a July 6, 2014 setback to Charlotte. His only other career four-walk outing came at Buffalo on April 17, 2014 when Burawa also earned the win.

MISCUE MAYHEM: The RailRiders committed three errors, all on the infield. It marked the third time all season SWB made three or more miscues in a single game. Dave Miley‘s team has allowed a league-worst 28 unearned runs among its 176 total runs allowed (.159). Gwinnett, Lehigh Valley and Pawtucket are tied for second at 25. Among SWB’s IL brothers, only Indianapolis (.163) with 24 of its 147 has seen a higher percentage of its runs allowed go unearned among.

WALK CITY: SWB issued a season-worst eight walks last night, trumping the seven dished out on Opening Day. Only one of the eight came around to score as Durham left 13 men on base.

ON A DIME: Two of the men who reached via the walk were retired thanks to outfield assists. In the opening inning, Taylor Motter walked but was doubled off first base when Jake Elmore flied out to center fielder Mason Williams who registered his first outfield assist of 2015. He did not record an assist during his 33 games of outfield play with Double-A Trenton to begin the year, but had seven with the Thunder in 118 games played as an outfielder last year. In the fifth, it was Elmore who reached out a walk that tried to score from second on Mikie Mahtook’s single to right. But Ben Gamel, playing right field for just the third time on the year, gunned him down at the plate to end the inning. Gamel has logged three assists and no errors in 31 games as an SWB outfielder.

RUNNING OF THE BULLS: Durham bested SWB for the first time in six tries this season. The RailRiders had outscored the Bulls 30-11 in claiming the first five clashes. Even with last night’s setback, the RailRiders have outhit Durham .265-.224 and own the better ERA at 1.74 against the Bulls’ 4.92 mark. SWB is already assured of its first season-series victory over Durham since the 2012 squad went 5-3. The team still has a chance to tie the 2008 team’s 7-1 mark as the best ever recorded by a Yankees-affiliated SWB squad against Durham. That season’s SWB Yankees also defeated the Bulls in the Governors’ Cup championship series including a 20-2 blowout in the clinching Game 4.

YOU DOWN WITH OBP?: Rob Refsnyder walked in the seventh to extend the IL’s best on-base streak of the year to 23 games. His run started in game two of the April 25 doubleheader versus Pawtucket. In that time, he has hit .366 while posting an OBP of .443 and 14 of his 17 RBIs. Buffalo’s Matt Hague also has a 23-gamer currently that began on April 29. However, Refsnyder went 0-for-4 last night to snap the team’s top hitting streak of the campaign at 11 games. During that spurt, he hit .400 with a .481 OBP and seven RBIs.

SLADE’S BLADE: Slade Heathcott earned his first Major League start and hit last night. He started in center field batting ninth and laced a hustle double to left-center in his first at-bat against starter Colby Lewis and went 2-for-3 on the night with a run scored.

Bulls Best Sloppy RailRiders

Moosic, PA – The Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/ New York Yankees) fell to the Durham Bulls 4-1 Friday night at PNC Field. The RailRiders (22-21) committed three errors and issued a season-worst eight walks. The Bulls (22-22) grabbed their first win of the season against SWB.

Everett Teaford (3-3) limited the RailRiders to a one run on six hits over 5.2 innings. Danny Burawa (1-1) absorbed his first loss of the year after yielding two unearned runs. The right-hander battled an erratic command, surrendering four walks over 1.1 innings. Preston Guilmet tossed a scoreless ninth for his first save with Durham.

The Bulls plated the first run with a two-out rally against starter Kyle Davies in the second inning. Corey Brown reached on an infield single and moved to second on soft hit by Luke Maile. Leonardo Reginatto slammed a single to center that brought in Brown before Maile was thrown out at third to end the inning.

Tyler Austin willed his team onto the scoreboard in the fourth. The designated hitter singled and stole second. Austin then made an aggressive move to third on a fly out to center by Ben Gamel.  With two out and Jonathan Galvez batting, Teaford uncorked a wild pitch through the legs of Maile. Austin scored on the play to knot the score 1-1.

Durham took advantage of defensive miscues to grab the lead for good in the sixth. Burawa allowed a walk to Allan Dykstra on the outset before striking out J.P. Arencibia. Brown drew a base on balls before Maile hit into a force out at second. The RailRiders attempted to turn the double play, but Rob Refsnyder’s throw bounced past first baseman Kyle Roller. The error allowed Dykstra to score for a 2-1 lead.

The advantage grew to 3-1 for Durham the next at-bat when a throwing error by Nick Noonan also got away from Roller. Maile scored from second. The Bulls capped the scoring on an RBI-double by Jake Elmore in the eighth.

Ramon Flores had three hits, and got on base four at out of his five at bats. Rob Refsnyder extended his on-base streak to 23 with a walk in the seventh. He finished the night 0-for-4, snapping his season-long hitting streak at 11. Friday’s loss marked the third time the RailRiders committed three or more errors in the game.

The RailRiders continue their series against the Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) at PNC Field on Saturday night. Right-hander Bryan Mitchell (2-3, 3.68) opposes RHP Matt Buschmann (3-3, 3.44). The RailRiders will give away a CHAMP Vader Bobblewaist doll to the first 2,500 fans in attendance as part of Star Wars Night. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. For tickets or more information, call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit the team’s website,  www.swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders –

SWB Game Notes 5-22-15

CLICK HERE for the May 22 edition of the RailRiders’ game notes. CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call live with John Sadak and Darren Headrick. Pregame coverage starts at 6:35 p.m.

WALK IT OFF: Ben Gamel‘s infield single in the bottom of the 10th inning capped a four-run rally by the RailRiders in a 4-3 win over the Durham Bulls.

TANAKA TIME: In his first rehab start since hitting the DL on April 29, Masahiro Tanaka tossed three scoreless innings. He allowed two hits, no walks and struck out two on 41 pitches (25 strikes).

EXTRA, EXTRA!: The RailRiders improved to 4-0 in extra-inning games while the Bulls fell to 0-5 in free baseball. No other IL team stands undefeated or winelss in extra-inning play.

RALLY RIDERS: The three-run deficit was the largest overcome by the RailRiders in a victory this season. The team rallied from a multi-run hole to win only once before this season, on May 16 at Durham in a 3-2 final. That game also saw Dylan Floro as the starter.

SEVENTH HEAVEN: The RailRiders came back when trailing after seven innings for the first time this season. The team had been 0-15 in such circumstances. Durham lost for just the second time when leading after seven. The Bulls entered the game 20-1 with a lead entering the eighth.

INHERITANCE TAX: The bullpen inherited three runners and two scored including both hand-me-down men given to Jacob Lindgren. He had stranded every inherited runner but one on his short pro career including his first seven with SWB. The only prior inherited runner that crossed came on Aug. 12, 2014 while with Double-A at Altoona. Mark Montgomery (1-0) stranded a hand-me-down man en route to the win. He has left all three of his inherited runners on the bases this year. The righty left 15 of his 17 inherited runners on last year between Double-A Trenton and SWB. The RailRiders’ 2015 bullpen has allowed 23 of its 54 (43%) inherited runners to cross the plate.

SCOOOOOORRRRRREEEEE!: Mason Williams made his Triple-A debut as the leadoff man and center fielder. He connected on his first Triple-A hit with the first of four straight SWB knocks during the three-run rally to tie the game.

LET’S GET HIM ON: Rob Refsnyder connected on an RBI single during the team’s game-tying rally in the eighth to extend the IL’s best on-base streak of the year to 22 games. His run started in game two of the April 25 doubleheader versus Pawtucket. In that time, he has hit .382 while posting an OBP of .455 and 14 of his 17 RBIs. No IL player has assembled a better on-base streak in 2015. Both Charlotte’s Dan Black (Apr. 11-May 7) and Toledo’s Daniel Fields (Apr. 17-May 12) had 20-gamers that halted earlier this month. Buffalo’s Matt Hague also has a 22-gamer currently that began on April 29. On Monday, Refsnyder was named the IL’s Batter of the Week for May 11-17. The second baseman hit .400 with a league-best six extra-base hits and 22 total bases.

HIT IT: Refsnyder extended his hitting streak to 11 games, surpassing his 10-game run from April 25-May 6 as the longest by a 2015 RailRider. He stands tied with Rochester’s Argenis Diaz (May 11-Present) for the IL’s best active hitting streak after Charlotte’s Jason Coats saw his string snap at 11 games yesterday.

OFF THE RAILS: For the second time in as many days, PNC Field saw its largest crowd of the year…A paid gathering of 7,737 trumped Wednesday’s schoolkid special (7,670)…Gamel drove in the winning run for the team’s second walk-off win of the year…He scored the deciding tally in the first walk-off win, a 15-inning triumph over Lehigh Valley on April 20, thanks to Nick Noonan‘s single.

RailRiders Rally for Victory in Extras

Moosic, PABen Gamel’s infield single in the bottom of the 10th inning capped a four-run rally by the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) in a 4-3 win. The RailRiders (22-20) improved to 4-0 in extra-inning games while the Bulls (21-22) fell to 0-5 in overtime. The three-run deficit was the largest overcome by the RailRiders in a victory this season.

Continuing his return from a wrist and forearm injury, the New York Yankees’ Masahiro Tanaka pitched effectively. The right-hander was able to work through three innings, striking out two and allowing just two hits. Tanaka threw 41 pitches, 25 for strikes.

Mark Montgomery (1-0) picked up the win with 1.1 innings of scoreless relief. Ronald Belisario (0-2) shouldered the loss after 1.2 innings of work, allowing the winning run to cross in the last of the 10th.

The two teams blew through the front five innings without a run scoring. Eugenio Velez finally cracked the seal for Durham when he doubled home Jake Elmore against reliever Joel De La Cruz.

Leading 1-0, the Bulls added two more runs when Velez stroked a double down the left field line. The two-baser off Jacob Lindgren plated Leonardo Reginatto and Taylor Motter.

Stymied for much of the game, the RailRiders’ bats came alive against Andrew Bellatti in the eighth. Rob Segedin drew a walk and outfielder Mason Williams’ first Triple-A hit was a smash to right. Ramon Flores followed with a single to score Segedin, who just beat the tag on a close play at the plate.

Rob Refsnyder extended his hitting streak to 11 games on a hard single to left that scored Williams. Behind only 3-2, Tyler Austin launched a double to the right-center gap to push across Flores. Bellatti dug in with the go-ahead run at third and kept the RailRiders from doing further damage.

In the 10th, Refsnyder reached on a force out at second. With two out, Refsnyder stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch. Gamel’s high bounder up the middle glanced off Jake Elmore’s glove, allowing Refsnyder to cross home for the winning run.

The RailRiders continue their series against the Durham Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) at PNC Field on Friday night. Right-hander Kyle Davies (2-3, 5.17) opposes LHP Everett Teaford (2-3, 6.28). It’s an action-packed night at PNC Field as the team will wear special flannel jerseys as part of Country Night. A post-game fireworks show will follow as part of Fireworks Friday. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m. For tickets or more information, call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit the team’s website,  www.swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders –

SWB Game Notes 5-21-15

CLICK HERE for the May 21 edition of the RailRiders’ game notes. CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call live with Darren Headrick. John Sadak and Fox 56 sports director Bob Ide will have the TV call on MyTV and the YES Network.

LAST TIME OUT: A dominant pitching performance from Erik Johnson clinched the series for the Charlotte Knights with a 5-2 win over the RailRiders yesterday morning.

LET’S GET HIM ON: Rob Refsnyder singled twice, walked once and scored a run as he extended the IL’s best on-base streak of the year to 21 games on Tuesday. His run started in game two of the April 25 doubleheader versus Pawtucket. In that time, he has hit .393 while posting an OBP of .469 and 13 of his 16 RBIs. No IL player has assembled a better on-base streak in 2015. Both Charlotte’s Dan Black (Apr. 11-May 7) and Toledo’s Daniel Fields (Apr. 17-May 12) had 20-gamers that halted earlier this month. On Monday, Refsnyder was named the IL’s Batter of the Week for May 11-17. The second baseman hit .400 with a league-best six extra-base hits and 22 total bases.

HIT IT: Refsnyder entered today’s tilt on a 10-game hitting streak to tie his own April 25-May 6 string as the longest by a 2015 RailRider. He stands a game behind the 11-game runs of Charlotte’s Jason Coats (May 9-Present) and Rochester’s Argenis Diaz (May 11-Present) for the IL’s best active hitting streak.

UP, UP & AWAY: Slade Heathcott got his first call to the big leagues yesterday and appeared as a pinch runner for Mark Teixeira in the eighth inning. He then stayed in the game as the center fielder. Originally a first-round pick (29th overall) by the Yankees in 2009, Heathcott hit .285/.335/.358/.693 over 37 games in his first season of Triple-A baseball. The RailRiders’ leadoff man delivered a pinch-hit single in the ninth two nights ago for his final at-bat with SWB. He led the team with five stolen bases and his 43 hits trailed only Refsnyder (44) for the team lead. This spring Heathcott won the James P. Dawson Award as the most outstanding rookie in spring training for the Yankees after hitting .333 in 23 games.

LORD I WAS BORN A GAMELING MAN: Ben Gamel lined a home run to right, his second of the season, as part of a two-hit day. His 14 multi-hit efforts on the year tie him for the team lead. The outfielder entered today ranked among the IL’s leaders in batting average (7th, .339), slugging percentage (5th, .504) and triples (T-3rd, 4). Over his last eight games, Gamel has gone 13-for-33 (.394) with seven of his 18 RBIs while lifting his average by over 20 points (.318-.339).

GETTIN’ FIGGY WITH IT: Cole Figueroa registered a season-best three hits. Since the start of last week’s series against his former club, Durham, Figueroa has gone 8-for-19 (.421) with three doubles. He entered today as the IL’s hardest hitter to strike out with a PA/K ratio of 22.5:1.

PACKED HOUSE: The crowd of 7,670 on a schoolkid special Wednesday made for the RailRiders’ biggest home crowd of the season, trumping the Opening Day gathering of 7,493 on April 9.

LONG & WINDING ROAD: Starter Jaron Long (2-3) became the third RailRider to last seven innings this season. He also allowed a career-worst 10 hits. Two of his three losses have come in his two starts against Charlotte along with both of his home runs allowed, an 8.10 ERA, 1.90 WHIP and a .378 batting average against. Kyle Davies (once) and Bryan Mitchell (twice) are the other RailRiders that have lasted seven or more innings this season.

OFF THE RAILS: Erik Johnson’s nine strikeouts for Charlotte marked the most by any opposing pitcher against the RailRiders this season…A double steal by Gamel and Ramon Flores made for SWB’s second game of the season with multiple steals…The first also came against the Knights, at Charlotte on May 3…The RailRiders fell to 1-3 in rubber matches…The RailRiders lost the season series to the Knights, 4-3.

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