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Garcia Leads RailRiders to Series Win

 

Pawtucket, R. I. –Shane Greene pitched six shutout innings and combined with two other RailRiders relievers to shutout the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) 3-0 Tuesday at McCoy Stadium. Adonis Garcia added tallied four-hits for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Triple-A/New York Yankees), including a double and a home run. The win is the third-straight for SWB and finished the road trip at an even 4-4.

Garcia led off the RailRiders (23-21) third with a first-pitch home run that snuck over the right field wall for the early 1-0 lead. The home run by Garcia was his second of the season.

Scoreless middle frames followed as Pawtucket starter Anthony Ranaudo settled in, retiring six-straight hitters before issuing a walk and a single in the fifth. Greene was equally as impressive, retiring seven of his first eight before allowing his a base hit to Mike McCoy in the third.

One of the few Pawtucket scoring opportunities took place in the fourth. With Daniel Nava standing at first base, Brandon Snyder doubled down the left-field line. Nava hustled around third, but a relayed throw from Garcia cut down Nava sliding into home to preserve the 1-0 the SWB lead.

The lead swelled with a two-run seventh that sent six RailRiders o the plate. Antoan Richardson reached on a walk and moved to second on a single by Jose Gil. A ground ball by Jose Pirela cut down Gil advancing to second for the first out before Garcia added insurance with a run-scoring single to left. Flores followed with an RBI of his own that pushed the lead to 3-0.

Greene (1-2) had his longest outing of the season, twirling six scoreless inning of four-hit ball in the win while Ranaudo (4-3) tossed 5.1 innings, needing 106 pitches to work his way through the RailRiders line up in the loss.  Robert Coello pitched the final 1.2 innings to pick up his second save of the season, striking out four batters in the process.

The RailRiders will take a break from the road when the club returns home to PNC Field Wednesday, May 22 for a 6:35 p.m. tilt against the Rochester Red Wings.  SWB tossed left-hander Matt Tracy (0-0, 5.40) while the Red Wings call upon righty Alex Meyer (2-1, 3.79). John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on MyNetwork TV as Jim Riley fills in on radio with the pregame show beginning at 6:05 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:

The combined shutout is the third of the seasons for the RailRiders and first since a 5-0 win over Buffalo on April 23.

Adonis Garcia collected his fourth outfield assist of the season, trailing only Ramon Flores (5) on the RailRiders active roster in the category.

With his base hit in the first, Adonis Garcia extended his team-best 17-game winning streak with a four-for-five day. During the 17-game run Garcia is 32-for-70 (.457).

 

 

 

 

RailRiders Rally, Defeat PawSox in 10 Innings

 Pawtucket, R.I. – On a night they hit into a triple play, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) found the resolve to rally and defeat the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) at McCoy Stadium in 10 innings, 5-3.  The RailRiders (22-21) posted their third win in four games while the PawSox (25-21) lost for the fifth time in seven games.

Dean Anna gave his team a 1-0 lead with a run-scoring groundout in the second inning.  That seemed to be enough with the way starter Joel De La Cruz was tossing.  At one point, he retired 11 straight PawSox from the close of the first until Corey Brown singled with one out in the fifth.   The next hitter, Dan Butler, bounced into a double play.

But in the sixth, Mike McCoy worked a one-out walk and Ryan Roberts followed with a single that sent McCoy to third.  Daniel Nava subsequently sent McCoy home with a sacrifice fly for a 1-1 draw.  De La Cruz allowed just that one run on four hits over 5.2 innings.  He walked two and struck out a season-best six.

Mark Montgomery, who stranded two inherited runners in the sixth, ran into trouble an inning later.  The first three men reached base in Garin Cecchini, Corey Brown and Dan Butler with Cecchini scoring on a wild pitch.  Roberts singled Brown home for a 3-1 margin and Nava then walked to load the bases.  But Montgomery got a fly-out to right from clean-up hitter Ryan Lavarnway to leave ‘em loaded.

In the eighth, Adonis Garcia connected on a two-run homer to left-center that tied the game against Drake Britton.  Consecutive walks to Ramon Flores and Kyle Roller extended the threat before Zelous Wheeler bounced into a history-making series of outs.  He had shown bunt multiple times with the infield in, but ultimately chopped a bouncer to the drawn-in Cecchini at third.  Cecchini retreated, hit third for one and ignited an around-the-horn triple play.

Jim Miller (3-1) struck out three men over two perfect innings in providing a bridge to free baseball.  Chris Hernandez (1-4) fired a 1-2-3 ninth but had trouble in the 10thJose Pirela reached for the fifth time in as many plate appearances with a high-bouncing single to Lavarnway at first.  He hustled hard down the line and just reached the bag ahead of the choppy steps of Hernandez covering.  Garcia then walked and Flores snapped the deadlock with a single to right.  Nava’s throw in was late as Pirela scored, Garcia took third and Flores advanced to second on the throw.

Roller then skied a ball to left that allowed Garcia to tag up and score, but Flores got caught in a rundown for a 7-5-6-4 sacrifice-fly double play that ended the inning.  In the bottom half of the inning, Diego Moreno struck out two and allowed just a two-out Lavarnway single for his first save.

The RailRiders conclude their eight-game homestand Tuesday, May 20 at 12:05 p.m.  SWB will toss right-hander Shane Greene (0-2, 6.11) against PawSox right-hander Anthony Ranaudo (4-2, 3.47). John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on radio with the pregame show beginning 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. 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:

The IL’s first triple play of 2014 was Pawtucket’s first since June 26, 2009 against the Norfolk Tides.  The only SWB triple play turned occurred June 5, 1997 at Norfolk. In game two of a doubleheader, singles by two SWB alumni then with the Tides, Wes Chamberlain and Phil Geisler, put runners on first and second. Chris Saunders then hit a soft liner to shortstop Desi Relaford who stepped on second to double-up Chamberlain and threw to Mike Robertson at first to complete the trifecta.

On the season, the RailRiders have now been no-hit (April 26 at Durham) and have seen an opponent turn a triple play against them.

Adonis Garcia added another multi-hit effort, going 2-for-4 with his game-tying homer and stretched his hitting streak to 16 games.  His streak has lifted his season-long average by 87 points (.237-.324). Garcia owns the team’s best hitting streak since Todd Linden‘s 19-game run from April 14-May 4, 2009.

Jose Pirela posted his fourth straight multi-hit performance (3-for-3, 2BB) and lifted his season-long average to a season-high .303. He has gone 10-for-15 over those three affairs, raising his contact clip by 43 points.

Pawtucket suffered its first extra-inning loss of the year while the RailRiders tied the PawSox for the league’s best record in free baseball (5-1).

The RailRiders have won consecutive road games for the second time this season. The only other occasion came on April 17 when they swept the Bisons in a doubleheader at Buffalo.  The franchise has not won three straight road games since July 26-28, 2013, all at Louisville.

Porcupine Points: May 19 at Pawtucket

gamenotes5.19.14

BOUNCING BACK: The RailRiders never trailed in posting a 3-2 Sunday victory over the PawSox at McCoy Stadium.

JOSE CAN YOU SEE: In his third game as a RailRider, Jose Gil came through. The back-up backstop bounced a two-out, two-strike pitch up the middle to plate a pair of second-inning runs. Gil is now 1-for-8 as a RailRider.

TRIPLE THREAT: Kyle Roller notched his first triple of the season at the start of the second inning. Roller’s 10th career three-base hit was his first in more than a year. He last logged one on April 27, 2013 while with Double-A Trenton against Portland, the Eastern League affiliate of the Red Sox. Zach Nuding, who started yesterday’s game for SWB, got the nod that day as well.

FOLLOW THE LEADER: While the RailRiders failed to plate leadoff runners in the first, second, third, fourth, fifth and seventh innings, they did get a run-scoring groundout from Jose Pirela in the eighth for the decisive tally. It scored Roller who began the inning by taking a bruise from Rich Hill (1-2).

LEAVING ‘EM ON: The RailRiders stranded 10 men on base and saw several baserunning gambles fall short as they went 2-for-18 with men in scoring position. On the road trip.

5-FOR-5: Switch pitcher Pat Venditte (1-0) struck out all five men he faced in his first Triple-A appearance since 2012 and got the win. Counting his time at Double-A, on the season Venditte has whiffed 35 men while walking five over 23.2 innings (13.3 K/9IP). He has held his foes to a .134 batting average and owns a composite 0.68 WHIP.

OH DANNY BOY: Danny Burawa survived a pair of ninth-inning walks and posted a five-out save, his first at the Triple-A level and the 10th on his pro career. He is the sixth different RailRider to log a save this season.’

HOT HITTER: Adonis Garcia added another multi-hit effort, going 2-for-5 with a double that stretched his hitting streak to 15 games. His current surge of success began May 3 and since that time he owns the IL’s best second-best contact clip. His 26-for-62 performance makes for slashes of .419/.446/.565/1.072 as his season-long average has leapt 82 points (.237-.319). Garcia owns the team’s best hitting streak since Brent Lillibridge composed a 15-gamer from June 27-July 13 last season. With a hit in his next game, Garcia would boast SWB’s longest hitting streak since Todd Linden‘s 19-game run from April 14-May 4, 2009.

WHO’S HOT: Pirela posted his third straight multi-hit performance (2-for-4, 2B, RBI, R) and lifted his season-long average to a season-high .288. He has gone 7-for-12 over those three affairs, raising his contact clip by 28 points.

WHO’S NOT: Scott Sizemore went 0-for-5 with four strikeouts. He leads the team with 43 whiffs in 98 at-bats. Over his last five games, he has gone 1-for-18 with eight strikeouts as his average has dipped by 43 points to a season-low .245.

OFF THE RAILS: While Pawtucket remains in first place in the IL North, the nip-and-tuck divisional race has all six games within 3.0 games of each other…Zach Nuding‘s 5.2 innings tied for his longest career Triple-A appearance, deadlocking with his June 21, 2013 debut at the level against Norfolk…Tonight, SWB bids for its second set of consecutive road wins this season…The only other turn of the trick came in a doubleheader sweep at Buffalo on April 17.

 

Home Runs Not Enough in 6-3 Loss

Pawtucket, R.I. – Jose Pirela went 3-for-3 with a home run, but three double play balls spoiled Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) threats in a 6-3 loss to the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) Saturday night at McCoy Stadium. The loss is the fifth for the RailRiders in its last six ballgames and drops the club a game below .500 at 20-21.

With runners at first and third, Ryan Roberts ignited a four-run fourth inning with a run scoring single that brought around the contests first run. Pawtucket loaded the bases on a single by Ryan Lavarnway before Brandon Snyder capped the inning with a bases clearing triple that swung the game in favor of the Red Sox, 4-0.

SWB did its best to rally, tallying three unanswered runs in the sixth and the seventh. Dean Anna put the RailRiders on the board with a home run in the in the sixth, his first of the season. Pirela followed suit after Zelous Wheeler reached on a two-out base hit with a home run to left that brought the game to within one at 4-3.

Branden Pinder surrender his first run as a RailRider in the eighth after Snyder doubled the lead with a home run and Cory Wade capped the scoring with a two-out RBI double off Pinder that pushed the lead to 5-3.

SWB failed to get a runner in scoring position, managing to get a runner on base in each of the nine innings.

Brian Gordon (2-4) grinded through 6.2 innings allowing four runs on eight hits in the loss, while Brandon Workman (3-1) scattered six hits and allowed two home runs in the win. Alex Wilson (5) worked around a base hit in the ninth to earn the save.

The RailRiders will continue the second leg of an eight-game road trip with the game two against the Pawtucket Red Sox Sunday, May 18 at 1:05 p.m. SWB sends righty Zach Nuding (1-2, 11.75) to the bump, while Pawtucket sends right-hander Rubby De La Rosa (2-3, 3.40) to the hill. John Sadak and Aaron Berlin will have the call on radio with the pregame show beginning 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:

Adonis Garcia extended a season-best 14-game hitting streak with a single in the fourth.

The three double plays turned against SWB marked the fourth time this season a club has accomplished the feat.

Brandon Pinder allowed his first run to cross in four outings.

- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! -

Garcia Paces Hit Parade in Win

Allentown, Pa. – Adonis Garcia doubled twice and helped pace a 13-hit attack as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (20-20) downed the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Philadelphia Phillies) 5-3 Friday night at Coca-Cola Park. The win allowed the RailRiders to avoid the four-game sweep and snapped a four-game losing streak that dated back to May 12, the longest of the year for SWB.

Lehigh Valley plated the contests first three runs, tallying scores in each of the first two frames against RailRiders starting pitcher Matt Tracy on RBI base knocks by Cameron Rupp and Maikel Franco that put the RailRiders in a 3-0 deficit.

Sean O’Sullivan yielded way to two base hits prior to running into trouble in the fifth. Three-straight batters reached in the fifth before Dean Anna brought the RailRiders first run home on a sacrifice fly, Garcia followed with a double to center that plated Francisco Arcia from third. The run by Arcia brought the score to within one at 3-2.

Kyle Roller and Russ Canzler began the sixth by reaching on successive walks before SWB loaded the bases for the second-straight frame with a single by Jose Pirela. O’Sullivan induced a double play off the bat of Arcia to cut down Roller from third, but Antoan Richardson followed with a run-scoring base hit that plated Canzler from third to even the contests at 3-3.

Ramon Flores kept the game tied in the last of sixth, cutting down the IronPigs’ go-ahead by firing a dart to the plate that beat Steve Susdorf, the outfield assist was one of two in the game by Flores. The RailRiders took advantage, pushing ahead with an RBI single by Scott Sizemore in the seventh. SWB added the final dagger in the ninth after an extra-base hit by Roller moved Sizemore to third, Canzler punctuated the game with a run-scoring single in the ninth that pushed the lead to 5-3.

Left-hander Tracy (NR) made his first appearance of the season for SWB, tossing five innings in earning the no decision. Diego Moreno (1-0) picked up his first win of the campaign, twirling a scoreless sixth and seventh. Kyle Simon (0-2) suffered the loss after allowing the go-ahead run to score in the seventh.

The RailRiders will begin the second leg of an eight-game road trip with the series opener against the Pawtucket Red Sox Saturday, May 17 at 6:05 p.m. SWB sends righty Brian Gordon (2-3, 4.06) to the bump, while Pawtucket elects to twirl right-hander Brandon Workman (2-3, 5.34). Aaron Berlin will have the call on radio with the pregame show beginning 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:

Adonis Garcia extended a season-best 13-game hitting streak with a double in the fourth.

All nine batters in the RailRiders nine added a base hit, including multi hit evenings by four different RailRiders.

The two outfield assist by Ramon Flores brings his season total to five on the season, the most on the team.

- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! –

Porcupine Points: May 16 at Lehigh Valley

gamenotes5.16.14

LAST TIME OUT: Shane Greene lasted a season-best five-plus innings, but yielded four runs on eight hits as the RailRiders fell to Lehigh Valley on Thursday night, 7-1.

TOUGH TIMES: SWB’s fifth loss in six games dropped it below .500 and into last place. It marks the first time the squad has endured either distinction since it was 14-15 on May 5. Before this spiral, the team had won six straight including a four-game sweep of first-place Indianapolis.

COMPLETE EFFORT: The offense mustered just four hits against Barry Enright (1-2), who tossed his second career nine-inning complete game and logged his first win of the season.

ON A ROLL: The lone run came off a Kyle Roller homer, his second of the week and his 11th of the season including time with Double-A Trenton. After going 0-fot-6 in his first two Triple-A games, Roller has hit safely in four consecutive contests. His season-long home run total ranks second on the Yankees’ farm to current Double-A resident, Peter O’Brien (14).

HOT HITTER: Adonis Garcia went 1-for-4 with a double and stretched his hitting streak to 12 games. That surpassed his own 11-game run from April 9-23 for the longest SWB hitting streak of the season. Since his current surge of swinging success began on May 3, he owns the IL’s best contact clip. His 21-for-48 performance makes for slashes of .438/.471/.563/1.033 as his season-long average has leapt 78 points (.237-.315).

ROSTER CHANGES: A flurry of roster moves had Chase Whitley sent to the big leagues where he tossed 4.2 scoreless innings and notched a base hit in his debut against the Mets. Fred Lewis returned from the SWB DL, but failed to get an out as he allowed five men to reach and coughed up three runs. Austin Romine hit the shelf as he was placed on the DL while fellow catcher Jose Gil was received back from SS-A Staten Island. Gil has played in two games all season and none since April 8 at Rochester.

IRONRAIL TROPHY: On June 13 of last year, the RailRiders and IronPigs announced the creation of the “IronRail Trophy”. The 16-game series between the RailRiders and IronPigs decides the annual winner. The stakes have the losing team’s GM singing in a fat lady costume on the winner’s video board after home wins in the series and the heavy hardware itself. The trophy is held by the previous year’s winning team. The 2013 series was an 8-8 draw, but per the rules, the winner of the last game won the tiebreaker. By taking a 3-2 contest on Aug. 31 in Allentown, the RailRiders claimed the prize. SWB owns a 57-46 lead in the all-time series dating back to Lehigh Valley’s inaugural 2008 season. Lehigh Valley has only won a season series against SWB once, and did so by the slimmest of margins when it went 9-7 in 2010. The RailRiders trail this year’s set, 6-1.

SHUFFLING THE DECK: Ramon Flores hit third for the first time since he was with Advanced-A Tampa in 2012. The usual leadoff man essentially swapped roles with the team’s customary three-hole hitter this season, Dean Anna. Anna served as a leadoff man for the first time since he was with Triple-A Tucson last season. Garcia hit second for the first time since last season with SWB – something he did just once with the 2013 team.

Miscues Lead to Loss

Allentown, Pa. – Joel De La Cruz twirled a career-best seven innings and Zelous Wheeler added three hits, but a miscue by De La Cruz in the second led to an unearned run that proved to be the difference for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) in a 3-2 loss to the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Philadelphia Phillies) Wednesday night at CoCa-Cola Park. The loss is the third for SWB in its last four games and moves the RailRiders to 1-5 against the ‘Pigs this season.

SWB jumped out to an early advantage, plating a run on a pair of hits in the visiting second. Adonis Garcia tripled on a ball to right and scored on a base knock by Zelous Wheeler for the early 1-0 lead.

The RailRiders plated their second run in the third. Jose Pirela led the frame off with a walk and advanced to third after consecutive singles by Austin Romine and Antoan Richardson loaded the bases. Scott Sizemore brought around the RailRiders second run on a sacrifice fly, his third of the year. After successive outs the RailRiders stranded a runner in route to the 2-0 lead.

Lehigh Valley evened the tilt with two runs of its own in the home third. Steve Susdorf doubled and took third on a miscue by RailRiders starter Joel De La Cruz, the error allowed Leandro Castro to advance to second giving the ‘Pigs runners at second and third with nobody out. Ronny Cedeno and Tyson Gillies followed with run scoring hits that plated both Susdorf and Castro to tie the game at 2-2.

The IronPigs added the go-ahead tally in the fourth on a sacrifice fly. Koyie Hill doubled to left and moved to third on a ground ball to right side. Susdorf brought the lead run home on a sacrifice fly to left that pushed the lead to 3-2.

SWB mounted a comeback in the ninth as Wheeler reached on a two-out base hit and went first-to-third on the successive single by Russ Canzler. With runners at the corners Pirela grounded out to effectively end the ballgame, giving the IronPigs the 3-2 win.

De La Cruz (1-1) was tagged with his first career Triple-A loss, tossing a career-best seven innings, yielding three runs. Greg Smith (4-0) earned the win, twirling 6.2 innings and scattering seven hits while Justin De Fratus (3), despite allowing two base hits in ninth, was awarded the save.

The RailRiders will continue an eight-game road trip through the IL North with the third of four games against Lehigh Valley, Thursday, May 15 at 7:05 p.m. SWB tosses righty Shane Greene (0-1, 5.68) to the hill while the Ironpigs send right-hander Barry Enright (0-2, 4.71) to the hill.  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:

Adonis Garcia tied a season-best 11-game hitting streak with a triple in second.

Zelous Wheeler went three-for-four with an RBI.

The one-run loss moves SWB to 9-6 this season in games decided by a single tally.

- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! –

Porcupine Points: May 14 at Lehigh Valley

Game Notes 5-14-14

HAYMAKER HAVOC: The RailRiders outhit the IronPigs in last night’s series opener 11-10, but fell 8-4. A big reason – big hits. Just one of the RailRiders’ knocks went for extra bases compared to half of the Pigs’ pokes. Four came against starter Zach Nuding (1-2) who was charged with six runs in just 3.2 innings.

ON A ROLL: Kyle Roller delivered SWB’s lone extra-base knock with his first Triple-A tater. The two-out, two-run shot in the seventh was his 10th of the season including his time with Double-A Trenton. Only the man who joined the Trenton roster when Roller came to NEPA, Peter O’Brien (13), has more homers on the Yankees farm this season.

HOT HITTER: Adonis Garcia went 3-for-4 with an RBI before he was removed from the game while playing the field during a Tyson Gillies at-bat in the eighth. Garcia has hit safely in 10 straight games and owns the IL’s best contact clip since it began on May 3. His 18-for-40 performance makes for slashes of .450/.488/.525/1.013 as his season-long average has leapt 73 points (.237-.310).

ANNA BEGINS: After a 1-for-20 homestand, Dean Anna broke through with a 3-for-4 performance including a walk and a run scored. Anna hit second in the lineup yesterday. Each of his first 13 affairs saw him slotted third in the nine.

JUMP FOR ZOI: Before last night’s game, the New York Yankees recalled the RailRiders’ best run producer, Zoilo Almonte. The switch-hitting outfielder led the team with six home runs and 24 RBIs. Only three RailRiders have assembled half as many RBIs as Almonte (Russ Canzler – 14; Ramon Flores – 14; Garcia – 13). No other RailRider has more than two home runs.

BACK IN BUSINESS: While Almonte got called up, two RailRiders returned. Danny Burawa was activated off the disabled list. He tossed a scoreless inning on 11 pitches (seven strikes). After a Jose Pirela error allowed Tyler Henson to reach at the start of the frae, Burawa induced three straight groundouts. It was his first action in nearly a month since April 17 at Buffalo. Corban Joseph also returned to the active roster after a short stint on the temporarily inactive list. He and his wife Emery welcomed their family’s first child, a baby girl named Addie Tyne. Joseph last saw game action on May 7 against Indianapolis.

IRONRAIL TROPHY: On June 13 of last year, the RailRiders and IronPigs announced the creation of the “IronRail Trophy”. The 16-game series between the RailRiders and IronPigs decides the annual winner. The stakes have the losing team’s GM singing in a fat lady costume on the winner’s video board after home wins in the series and the heavy hardware itself. The trophy is held by the previous year’s winning team. The 2013 series was an 8-8 draw, but per the rules, the winner of the last game won the tiebreaker. By taking a 3-2 contest on Aug. 31 in Allentown, the RailRiders claimed the prize. SWB owns a 57-44 lead in the all-time series dating back to Lehigh Valley’s inaugural 2008 season. Lehigh Valley has only won a season series against SWB once, and did so by the slimmest of margins when it went 9-7 in 2010. The RailRiders trail this year’s set, 4-1.

OFF THE RAILS: During the game, veteran skipper Dave Miley got ejected while arguing an interference error that turned an inning-ending out into an extra Pigs’ run in the fifth…It marked Miley’s second ejection in the last week (Saturday vs. Durham) and on the season…After a season-best six-game win streak, the RailRiders have lost three of their last four…Antoan Richardson started in right field for the first time this season and just the 28th time in his 10-year pro career…He last did so on May 29, 2012 while with Double-A Bowie at Akron…One of the runs allowed by Nuding came on a balk, the second of his pro career and his first since May 8, 2011 while with Low-A Charleston…The first came against another Phillies-affiliated team, the Lakewood BlueClaws…Including last night, the RailRiders are playing 16 of 20 on the road.

Porcupine Points: May 13 at Lehigh Valley

GAME NOTES 5-13-14

FLIP IT & REVERSE IT: The initial players changed and you wondered if the result would follow suit. It did, and it didn’t. The RailRiders started Chase Whitley, who was scratched the day before, for just one perfect inning by design.  Scheduled starter Brian Gordon (2-3) followed. Durham took the nod away from scheduled man Enny Romero and went with a bullpen day. But despite the flurry of last-minute changes, the final score on Monday was the same as the day before, 2-1. This time however, it favored the visiting Bulls. SWB alumnus Wilson Betemit drove in each of Durham’s runs as reliever Jake Thompson (1-0) got the win and closer Kirby Yates bolted down his league-best 10th save. Durham pitching retired the last dozen RailRiders bats in a row including three successive strikeouts in the ninth.

LONG & WINDING ROAD: After a 6-2 homestand, the RailRiders embark upon an eight-game journey to IL North foes Lehigh Valley and Pawtucket. Thereafter, the team enjoys a brief four-game homestand with another divisional foe, Rochester, paying a visit to PNC Field. Thereafter, the team takes another eight-game road trip. Add in those Louisville and Indianapolis series, and the RailRiders will play 16 of their next 20 away from Moosic.

HOMEBODIES: The RailRiders stand tied with three teams (Columbus, Pawtucket, Syracuse) for the most home wins in the IL. SWB hits slightly better on the road (.261) than at home (.258), but the runs-per-game split is even wider on the road (4.5) against home (3.8). Pitching provides even wider splits. At home, the staff has assembled a 2.93 ERA while holding opponents to a .249 batting average. On the road, the numbers swell to 5.06 and .290 respectively. Opponents have nearly twice as many home runs (10) on the road than at PNC Field (6).

MY BAD: Two errors on Monday denied the squad its first back-to-back mistake-free contests of 2014. The RailRiders rank last in the IL with their .970 fielding percentage and co-lead the loop in total errors (38) with Louisville. SWB backstops have also been charged with more passed balls (9) than any other team’s catchers in the circuit. Last year’s unit tied for the IL’s third-best fielding percentage (.981) and second-lowest error total (97). The team had a dozen passed balls all season. Only three 2013 IL teams posted a lower number.

LET’S GET SERIESOUS: Durham claimed each of the two series between the teams in 2013. Yesterday, the RailRiders settled for a four-game split in Moosic after losing three of four at Durham. The team has not won a home series against Durham since a four-game sweep from June 5-8, 2012 in Durham. The franchise has not claimed a home series from Durham since another sweep from May 2-4, 2008. In that series finale, Kei Igawa struck out eight Bulls in seven innings for one of his franchise-record 33 wins. One of SWB’s offensive heroes was a man who now stars for Durham – Wilson Betemit. In one of his eight career games for the franchise, he doubled, walked twice and scored two runs.

WALK THIS WAY: Monday saw Durham walk four times while the RailRiders drew just a pair. Durham entered today leading the IL with 165 free passes drawn, while SWB is the league’s only club below the century mark at 97.

OFF THE RAILS: Antoan Richardson swiped his team-best 11th base of the season…The RailRiders went 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position on Monday and 4-for-31 (.129) on the series…Dean Anna started at second base for the first time as a RailRider…He has played second more than any other position on his career…He went 1-for-20 on the homestand…Brett Gerritse tossed two scoreless and hitless innings in his Triple-A debut…Ramon Flores went 0-for-4 and posted a 4-for-27 homestand…His seven games played on the series dropped his season-long batting average from .282 to .254.

Betemit Drives in Two in RailRiders Loss

Moosic, Pa. – Wilson Betemit homered and drove in both of the Durham Bulls’ (Tampa Bay Rays) runs against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (19-17) reliever Brian Gordon Monday afternoon in a 2-1 loss at PNC Field. The loss to the Bulls (Tampa Bay Rays) allowed Durham to salvage a series split, ending the RailRiders run at PNC Field with a 6-2 mark.

The Bulls first run came courtesy of a Wilson Betemit home run to right in the fourth. A double by Mike Mahtook followed before Gordon ended the threat by retiring Ray Olmedo on a groundball.

The second Durham run crossed in the visiting fifth after Cole Figueroa singled and advanced to second on an error by Antoan Richardson. Betemit followed with his second hit on a run-scoring single to right that pushed the lead to 2-0.

The RailRiders responded with a run of their own in the fifth when Austin Romine reached on an infield single to third. Romine advanced on a walk to second before scoring on a single by Scott Sizemore that drew the RailRiders to within one at 2-1.

Good fortune was not on SWB’s side as the club combined to go two-for-11 with runners in scoring position, including two different frames where three-straight batters struck out to end the inning.

Gordon (2-3) suffered the loss for the RailRiders, tossing six innings in relief of Chase Whitley. Jake Thompson (1-0) earned received the win and earning the Bulls the series split, throwing two scoreless innings.

The RailRiders will begin eight-game road trip through the IL North with a four-game run against the Lehigh Valley Ironpigs (Philadelphia Phillies). Game one of the series begins Tuesday, May 13 at 7:05 p.m. at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, Pa. SWB sends righty Zach Nuding (1-1, 10.13) to the hill while the Ironpigs toss right-hander David Buchanan (4-0, 3.12).  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:

The loss to Durham ended the season series with the Bulls winning the eight-game set 5-3.

Antoan Richardson snagged his league-leading 11th stolen base of the season.

Brett Gerritse made his Triple-A debut, tossing two scoreless inning facing seven batters.

- SWB RailRiders – All Aboard! –

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