SWB Game Notes 8-9-15

CLICK HERE for the Aug. 9 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 5:30 p.m.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: A pair of two-run homers accounted for all of the hosts’ scoring as the RailRiders dropped a 4-2 decision to the Mud Hens at Fifth Third Field on Saturday night.

MUDDYING THE HENS: SWB has cemented the season series against Toledo for the first time since the IL North champion SWB Yankees went 6-2 against the Mud Hens in 2012. Last night marked the RailRiders’ first loss to Toledo this season. A win tonight would have SWB finish 5-1 against Toledo for its best showing against the Mud Hens as a Yankees affiliate (2007-Present).

ROAD WARRIORS: SWB owns Triple-A’s best road record at 36-21 (.632). A victory tonight would lock down a winning record outside of NEPA for the first time in the RailRiders era. Only three teams in full-season MiLB entered today with a better road record: A Quad Cities (Astros) at 37-17 (.685) and both AA Corpus Christi (Astros) and A+ Visalia (Diamondbacks) at 38-19 (.667).

CLOSE CALLS: Eight of the RailRiders’ last 17 games have been decided by one run. With last night’s two-run tilt, 12 of SWB’s last 17 games have come down to two runs or less.

TRIPLE THREAT: Ben Gamel tripled and scored. The team’s usual leadoff man has belted an MiLB-best 14 triples on the year. He has posted multiple hits in eight of his last 14 games, hitting .396/.459/.698/1.157 in that time. He has lifted his overall contact clip to .295, good for the IL’s eighth-best batting average. He also ranks fourth in runs scored (60).

FOR THREE!: No minor leaguer outside of Gamel (14) had more than 12 triples entering today. Gamel has a chance to match or exceed the SWB single-season record for triples. In 2005, Shane Victorino became the first Scranton/Wilkes-Barre player to win the International League’s Most Valuable Player Award when he set the franchise record with 16 triples. At mid-season he was not even named to the All-Star team. However, a strong second half propelled him to the loop’s highest honor and a place on the post-season All-Star team. Overall he finished 6th in batting (.310), 2nd in runs (93), 1st in triples (16), 2nd in total bases (264), 5th in extra-base hits (59), 5th in slugging (.534) and 8th in OBP (.377). In addition he slugged 18 homers and drove in 70 runs.

DOUBLE TROUBLE: Aaron Judge doubled and drove in a run. He snapped an 0-for-14 slide with a homer on Friday and has connected on run-scoring extra-base hits in consecutive games. Gary Sanchez went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored. After starting his Triple-A tenure 2-for-11 (.182/.286/.455/.740), he has gone 20-for-55 (.364/.429/.600/1.029). He enters tonight as a .333 hitter at Triple-A with nearly as many RBIs (17) as games played (18). Including his Double-A numbers, he co-leads the Yankees’ farm in home runs with Judge at 16.

OFF THE RAILS: In six games played on his latest SWB tenure, Slade Heathcott has gone 1-for-23 (.043) with two walks and nine strikeouts…Kyle Roller went 0-for-2 with a walk and a strikeout last night…The IL All-Star has gone 5-for-47 (.106) since the break with 18 strikeouts, lowering his average to a season-worst .223…A homerless Saturday snapped the RailRiders’ season-high-tying run of consecutive games with a home run at four…Jose Pirela was ejected by home plate umpire Jon Byrne in the fifth after he followed a strikeout looking by breaking his bat with a two-handed tomahawk of home plate…Taylor Dugas entered in Pirela’s place and went 0-for-1 to snap an eight-game hitting streak that began on June 8…The pitching threesome of Joel De La Cruz, Andury Acevedo and Johnny Barbato combined to post 10 strikeouts…Each team has won a game on the series and each time the victorious squad failed to get a hit with a man in scoring position…Starter Brady Lail turns 22 today.

Mud Hens Homer to Series-Tying Triumph

Gamel Collects MiLB-Best 14th Triple

Toledo, Ohio – A pair of two-run homers accounted for all of the hosts’ scoring as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) dropped a 4-2 decision to the Toledo Mud Hens (Detroit Tigers) at Fifth Third Field on Saturday night. The RailRiders (63-52) lost to the Mud Hens (47-67) for the first time this season (4-1).

Daniel Fields blasted a two-run homer to right against starter Joel De La Cruz in the third inning for a 2-0 Toledo lead.

SWB tied it up the next inning. Ben Gamel sparked the frame with his MiLB-best 14th triple and Rob Refsnyder got him home with a sac fly to left. Later in the inning, Gary Sanchez reached on a two-out infield single before Aaron Judge slugged a double to left-center that scored Sanchez.

After two scoreless innings of relief, Andury Acevedo (0-1) started the eighth and allowed a single to affiliated-MiLB home run king Mike Hessman. Dixon Machado came on to pinch run while Johnny Barbato swooped in to pitch. The hard-throwing right-hander struck out Marc Krauss and induced a fly-out from Manny Pina before Josh Wilson thundered a two-run homer to left for the 4-2 margin that would go final.

Guido Knudson worked around a Sanchez double to post a scoreless ninth for his ninth save. Fellow reliever Angel Nesbitt (1-4) got the win with two scoreless innings of work.

The three-game series concludes at 6 p.m. on Sunday night. The pitching match-up has SWB right-hander Brady Lail (0-1, 10.38) scheduled to face southpaw Mike Belfiore (5-10, 5.25).

The RailRiders return home to PNC Field for a short four-game run against the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) starting Monday night at 7:05 p.m. Below are the highlights each day:

Mon., Aug. 10 – Bark in the Bark 2 presented by Veterinary Referral and Emergency Clinic.  Bring your dog to the park, free dog refuse bags/holder to the first 500 dogs through the gates.  Lawn seating only available for guests choosing to bring their four-legged friends.  All dogs will need to be leashed, with current shot records and license for entry.

Tue., Aug. 11 – National Call 811 Before You Dig Night presented by 811 Call Before You Dig, UGI, PPL, USIC and UGI Energy.  It’s also Gildan National Tour Night.  Gildan will be on hand with product sampling and giveaways.

Wed., Aug. 12 – The iconic Budweiser Clydesdales will be making their way to PNC Field courtesy of Budweiser and the RailRiders’ friends at Northeast Eagle Distributors.  Fans will be treated to a pre-game on-field parade as well as access to the horses throughout the game for photo ops.

Thu., Aug. 13 – Join the fun with the RailRiders’ Thirsty Thursday.  $1 Drafts and Pepsi products courtesy of Budweiser from 6-8 p.m. and live music from Dashboard Mary.

For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders Baseball – The Place to Be! –

SWB Game Notes 8-8-15

CLICK HERE for the Aug. 8 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 6:30 p.m.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The RailRiders grabbed an early lead and held on for a 3-2 defeat of the Mud Hens on Friday night at Fifth Third Field. The RailRiders improved to 4-0 against a Mud Hens club that has lost seven of eight.

MUDDYING THE HENS: SWB has cemented the season series against Toledo for the first time since the IL North champion SWB Yankees went 6-2 against the Mud Hens in 2012.

AIR UP THERE: The RailRiders stand a season-high-tying 12 games above .500. A win tonight would lift the club to 13 games over for the first time since the then-SWB Yankees won the IL North at 84-60 in 2012.

ROAD WARRIORS: SWB owns Triple-A’s best road record at 36-20 (.643). A victory tonight would lock down a winning record outside of NEPA for the first time in the RailRiders era. Only three teams in full-season MiLB entered today with a better road record: A Quad Cities (Astros) at 37-17 (.685) and both AA Corpus Christi (Astros) and A+ Visalia (Diamondbacks) at 38-19 (.667).

CLOSE CALLS: Half of the RailRiders’ last 16 games have been decided by one run. Last night’s single-score finish lifted the team to a league-best 21-14 (.600) in one-run affairs. Eleven of SWB’s last 16 games have come down to two runs or less.

SIMPSON SIR, SECTOR 7G: Aaron Judge entered last night hitless over his last 14 at-bats and embroiled in a 2-for-30 slide with 17 strikeouts. He broke out in a big way with a line-drive homer in his first plate appearance. He finished the game 1-for-3 with a walk. Judge’s fourth home run at Triple-A was also his 16th overall in 2015 including his Double-A time. The round-tripper tied him with Gary Sanchez for the most home runs on the Yankees’ farm. Including his Trenton efforts, Judge’s home run gave him 100 hits on the year.

CAP IT: Southpaw starter Chris Capuano was perfect through three innings and finished with four hitless frames and a season-high eight strikeouts. He lowered his Triple-A ERA to 1.93. In 18.2 innings, he has struck out 19 while walking just four. He has held the IL to a .215 average with 14 hits for a 0.96 WHIP.

HEY, IT’S ENRICO PALAZZO!: Capuano set the tone with relievers James Pazos (3), Nick Goody (3) and Andrew Bailey (1) picking it up from there. Their 15 combined strikeouts set a new season-high mark for the club in a nine-inning game. It surpassed the 14-strikeout showing in a 3-1 loss to Rochester on April 14.

NOT-SO-GENTLE BEN: Ben Gamel went 2-for-4 to tie Cole Figueroa for the team lead in multi-hit games at 38. He has posted multiple hits in eight of his last 13 games, hitting .408/.474/.694/1.168 in that time. He has lifted his overall contact clip to .296, the best it has been since he was last over .300 on June 25 at .301.

WHO’S HOT?: Rob Refsnyder went 1-for-3 with his eighth home run and a walk. Since the start of July, he has hit .316/.398/.526/.925 at Triple-A. His .374 OBP ranks fourth in the IL. Jose Pirela went 1-for-4 with a lineout. Since the All-Star break, he has hit .380/.440/.506/.946. If he had enough plate appearances to qualify, his .336 average would rank second in the league. Gary Sanchez went 1-for-4. After starting his Triple-A tenure 2-for-11 (.182/.286/.455/.740), he has gone 18-for-51 (.353/.424/.588/1.012). He enters tonight as a .323 hitter at Triple-A with nearly as many RBIs (17) as games played (18).

OFF THE RAILS: Slade Heathcott went 0-for-4 with a strikeout…In six games played on his latest SWB tenure, he has gone 1-for-23 (.043) with two walks and nine strikeouts…The Yankees sent Tyler Austin to Double-A Trenton yesterday and called Taylor Dugas back up from Trenton…Austin, who had played in just three SWB games over a 10-day span from July 28-Aug. 6, went 3-for-4 with a double, a home run and three runs scored in a 6-3 win over Binghamton, knocking the B-Mets out of first place…All of Austin’s runs scored either tied the game or gave Trenton a lead, including the game-winning tally in the 11th…The RailRiders have homered in a season-high-tying four straight games (entire road trip).

Refsnyder, Judge Homer in Close Win

Capuano Fires Four Hitless Innings 

Toledo, Ohio – The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) grabbed an early lead and held on for a 3-2 defeat of the Toledo Mud Hens (Detroit Tigers) on Friday night at Fifth Third Field. The RailRiders (63-51) improved to 4-0 against a Mud Hens (46-67) club that has lost seven of eight. SWB has cemented the season series against Toledo for the first time since the IL North champion SWB Yankees went 6-2 against the Mud Hens in 2012.

Rob Refsnyder hammered a first-inning solo homer to left field, his eighth of the season, for a 1-0 lead. Aaron Judge then snapped an 0-for-14 slide with his own impressive line-drive pull job to left for a 2-0 margin in the second. An inning later, Greg Bird’s sac fly plated Austin Romine to make it 3-0.

SWB starter Chris Capuano spent that time overwhelming the Mud Hens. He was perfect through three and finished his night with four no-hit innings and a season-high eight strikeouts.

On the night he received formal congratulations with a gift-filled pregame ceremony, the recently-crowned minor league home run king Mike Hessman delivered his team’s first run with a sixth-inning single off James Pazos. A strikeout later, Pazos left with two on and one out. Nick Goody then induced a pop-out from Trayvon Robinson, walked Jeff McVaney to load the bases, and quelled the threat with a fly-out from Bryan Holaday.

Goody (1-1) allowed a leadoff single in the seventh, but retired the next six in a row to earn the win. Andrew Bailey surrendered a run in the ninth on a Casilla groundout before retiring Daniel Fields on a bouncer to first for his second save.

The three-game series continues at 7 p.m. on Saturday night. The pitching match-up has SWB right-hander Joel De La Cruz (7-0, 3.06) scheduled to face fellow right-hander Tim Melville (4-9, 5.29).

The RailRiders return home to PNC Field for a short four-game run against the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) starting Monday night at 7:05 p.m. Below are the highlights each day:

Mon., Aug. 10 – Bark in the Bark 2 presented by Veterinary Referral and Emergency Clinic.  Bring your dog to the park, free dog refuse bags/holder to the first 500 dogs through the gates.  Lawn seating only available for guests choosing to bring their four-legged friends.  All dogs will need to be leashed, with current shot records and license for entry.

Tue., Aug. 11 – National Call 811 Before You Dig Night presented by 811 Call Before You Dig, UGI, PPL, USIC and UGI Energy.  It’s also Gildan National Tour Night.  Gildan will be on hand with product sampling and giveaways.

Wed., Aug. 12 – The iconic Budweiser Clydesdales will be making their way to PNC Field courtesy of Budweiser and the RailRiders’ friends at Northeast Eagle Distributors.  Fans will be treated to a pre-game on-field parade as well as access to the horses throughout the game for photo ops.

Thu., Aug. 13 – Join the fun with the RailRiders’ Thirsty Thursday.  $1 Drafts and Pepsi products courtesy of Budweiser from 6-8 p.m. and live music from Dashboard Mary.

For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders Baseball – The Place to Be! –

SWB Game Notes 8-7-15

CLICK HERE for the Aug. 7 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 6:45 p.m.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The RailRiders were charged with four errors in an ugly 7-6 loss in Columbus against the Clippers (Cleveland Indians) on Thursday night. The teams split the six-game season series, but the Clippers (62-50) took two of three at Huntington Park where SWB has lost 10 of 11.

LORD I WAS BORN A GAMELING MAN: Ben Gamel went 2-for-3 with a three-run homer, a walk and a sacrifice. Gamel has more round-trippers at Triple-A this season (7) than any of his prior five campaigns. He entered 2015 with 10 taters over 415 games played and 1,634 at-bats. His 37th multi-hit effort of the season was also his seventh in his last 12 games, hitting .400/.472/.711/1.183 in that time. He has lifted his overall contact clip to .294, the best it has been since he was last over .300 on June 25 at .301.

BIRDMAN: Bird went 2-for-5 with an RBI. Over his last seven games, he has gone 13-for-31 with six extra-base hits and eight RBIs for slashes of .419/.419/.839/1.258. He hit six home runs in 49 games played and 182 at-bats with Double-A Trenton. He already has six homers in 28 games played and 113 at-bats at Triple-A. His 12 combined home runs rank him fourth on the Yankees’ farm. Bird has had some wide home-road splits. In 12 games at home he has gone 9-for-48 (.188/.235/.271/.506) against a 25-for-65 (.385/.444/.723/1.168) showing in 16 road games. All of his six homers and 19 RBIs have come outside of NEPA.

GETTIN’ FIGGY WITH IT: Cole Figueroa went 3-for-4 with a run scored for his team-best 38th multi-hit performance. He also was charged with three errors. He had only made multiple miscues in three of his prior 795 career games between the minors and MLB and had never been charged with more than two. No SWB player had committed three or more errors since at least 2004 before last night.

WHAT A RELIEF: Relievers Caleb Cotham and Nick Rumbelow combined to toss 4.1 frames of one-run baseball behind Kyle Haynes. The ‘pen has allowed just five runs (three earned) over its last 49.1 innings (0.91 ERA) since the July 23 win at Indianapolis. The ‘pen owns a collective 2.75 ERA compared to a 3.95 mark for the starting staff.

SERIESOUS BIZ: Last night marked the 17th one-run clash of SWB and Columbus over the last 31 meetings (Columbus 10-7). The RailRiders have lost 17 of 21 to the Clippers over the last several seasons. If the season ended today, SWB would be the IL North champ and Columbus would also make the playoffs as a wild-card entrant.

WHO’S HOT?: Rob Refsnyder went 1-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. Since the start of July, he has hit .315/.394/.500/.894 at Triple-A. His .373 OBP ranks fourth in the IL. Jose Pirela went 1-for-2 with a pair of walks and two runs scored. Since the All-Star break, he has hit .387/.448/.520/.968. If he had enough plate appearances to qualify, his .338 average would rank second in the league. Gary Sanchez went 2-for-5. After starting his Triple-A tenure 2-for-11 (.182/.286/.455/.740), he has gone 17-for-47 (.362/.436/.617/1.053). He enters tonight as a .328 hitter at Triple-A, his best average since he went 2-for-4 in his July 18 debut.

WHO’S NOT?: Slade Heathcott went 0-for-5 with a three strikeouts. In five games played on his latest SWB tenure, he has gone 1-for-19 (.053) with two walks and 10 strikeouts. Aaron Judge went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts. Over his last eight games he has gone 2-for-30 with three walks against 17 strikeouts (.067/.152/.200/.352). Judge has struck out in nine of his last 11 at-bats and is hitless over his last 14 at-bats.

Uber Partners with RailRiders

Safe Rides Program Begins

Moosic, Pa. – The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) have teamed up with Uber to create the Safe Rides program. The initiative will make sure fans have access to safe, reliable and affordable rides to and from games at PNC Field.

“This partnership reflects the RailRiders’ dedication to ensuring our fans have access to dependable, safe transportation when they need it,” said RailRiders interim GM Jeremy Ruby.

Together, the RailRiders and Uber are providing all fans who are new Uber users with a free first ride up to $20.  To receive the credit, fans will have to download the Uber app on any smartphone/mobile device and use the promo code: RAILRIDERS.

“We know how important it is to have a safe and convenient way to get around town, which is why we’re thrilled to partner with RailRiders to help ensure the community has access to reliable transportation anytime they’re traveling to or from RailRiders games at PNC Field,” said Jennifer Krusius, general manager for Uber.

The RailRiders return home to PNC Field for a short four-game run against the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) starting Monday night at 7:05 p.m. It will be Bark in the Park 2, presented by VREC (Veterinary Referral & Emergency Center). Fans are encouraged to bring their pups to the ballpark and the first 500 dogs in attendance will receive dog poop bags on entrance. For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders Baseball – The Place to Be! –

Columbus Clips RailRiders in Rubber Match

Teams Split Season Series, 3-3

Columbus, Ohio – The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) were charged with four errors in an ugly 7-6 loss in Columbus against the Clippers (Cleveland Indians) on Thursday night. The teams split the six-game season series, but the Clippers (62-50) took two of three at Huntington Park where SWB (62-51) has lost 10 of 11.

Down 2-0 in the second, four straight two-out hits gave the RailRiders a 4-2 lead including a towering three-run homer by Ben Gamel. Columbus rallied, plating a run in the third and three more in the fourth while chasing starter Kyle Haynes. The right-hander allowed six runs on eight hits and two walks over 3.2 innings.

A bases-loaded walk by Rob Refsnyder and an RBI single from Greg Bird tied the game at 6-6 in the sixth.  The lead would not last long.

In the seventh, Audy Ciriaco grounded a Nick Rumbelow (2-3) pitch to shortstop that Cole Figueroa fielded cleanly and tossed to Refsnyder for an out. Refsnyder had trouble with the transfer before bouncing a throw to first that bounced into the stands, allowing Zach Walters to score what proved to be the winning run.

SWB’s best chance to rally came in the eighth when Figueroa and pinch hitter Kyle Roller reached with a single and walk respectively. Gamel delivered a sac bunt before Refsnyder struck out. With Bird batting, Figueroa tried to score on a would-be wild pitch that shot over catcher Adam Moore’s head, but Moore recovered and fired a strike to closer Shawn Armstrong who dropped the tag on the sliding Figueroa to end the inning.

CC Lee (3-3) picked up the win while Armstrong logged his 14th save.

The RailRiders’ six-game road trip shifts to Toledo’s Fifth Third Field as they open a three-game series against the Mud Hens at 7 p.m. on Friday night. The pitching match-up has SWB southpaw Chris Capuano (1-1, 2.45) scheduled to face right-hander Thad Weber (6-7, 3.91).

The RailRiders return home to PNC Field for a short four-game run against the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) starting Monday night at 7:05 p.m. Below are the highlights each day:

Mon., Aug. 10 – Bark in the Bark 2 presented by Veterinary Referral and Emergency Clinic.  Bring your dog to the park, free dog refuse bags/holder to the first 500 dogs through the gates.  Lawn seating only available for guests choosing to bring their four-legged friends.  All dogs will need to be leashed, with current shot records and license for entry.

Tue., Aug. 11 – National Call 811 Before You Dig Night presented by 811 Call Before You Dig, UGI, PPL, USIC and UGI Energy.  It’s also Gildan National Tour Night.  Gildan will be on hand with product sampling and giveaways.

Wed., Aug. 12 – The iconic Budweiser Clydesdales will be making their way to PNC Field courtesy of Budweiser and the RailRiders’ friends at Northeast Eagle Distributors.  Fans will be treated to a pre-game on-field parade as well as access to the horses throughout the game for photo ops.

Thu., Aug. 13 – Join the fun with the RailRiders’ Thirsty Thursday.  $1 Drafts and Pepsi products courtesy of Budweiser from 6-8 p.m. and live music from Dashboard Mary.

For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders Baseball – The Place to Be! –

SWB Game Notes 8-6-15

CLICK HERE for the Aug. 6 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.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The RailRiders rode the hot hitting of Greg Bird to a 7-2 series-tying win in Columbus against the Clippers on Wednesday night.

BIRDMAN: Bird went 3-for-5 with his first triple above A-ball, two home runs and four RBIs. Over his last six games, he has gone 11-for-26 with six extra-base hits and seven RBIs for slashes of .423/.423/.923/1.346. He hit six home runs in 49 games played and 182 at-bats with Double-A Trenton. He already has six homers in 27 games played and 108 at-bats at Triple-A. His 12 combined home runs rank him fourth on the Yankees’ farm. He became the first RailRider to homer twice in a game since Rob Refsnyder hit a pair at Durham on May 17. Bird has had some wide home-road splits. In 12 games at home he has gone 9-for-48 (.188/.235/.271/.506) against a 23-for-60 (.383/.448/.750/1.198) showing in 15 road games. All of his six homers and 18 RBIs have come outside of NEPA.

A WIN TONIGHT WOULD…: Be the RailRiders’ 12th in 15 games while lifting the club to 13 games above .500. SWB has not stood that many games above sea level since the 2012 SWB Yankees won the IL North at 84-60.

MULTIPLICITY: Cole Figueroa went 2-for-4 with an RBI for his team-best 37th multi-hit showing. Figueroa has hit lefties and righties to the exact same average – .309. Ben Gamel kept right on his heels as his 2-for-5 effort with a run scored made for his 36th performance with two or more knocks. Gamel owns six multi-hit efforts over his last 11 games, hitting .381/.449/.643/1.092. Gamel’s surge has lifted his average to .291, the best it has been since June 28.

EIGHT IS GREAT: Starter Kyle Davies posted his team-best eighth win with five innings of two-run ball. He has six quality starts over his last eight nods and since the start of July has gone 2-0 with a 2.09 ERA, 1.09 WHIP, and .208 batting average against over seven starts. He also leads the squad in losses (6) thanks to a lack of run support. He gets just 3.8 runs/start including a total of nine runs in his six setbacks (1.5/loss).

WHAT A RELIEF: Relievers Andury Acevedo, Johnny Barbato and Andrew Bailey combined to toss four frames of scoreless baseball behind Davies. The ‘pen has allowed just four runs (two earned) over its last 45 innings (0.40 ERA) since the July 23 win at Indianapolis. The ‘pen owns a collective 2.76 ERA compared to a 3.89 mark for the starting staff. Acevedo struck out two over one inning in his Triple-A debut. Barbato tossed two frames and has yet to allow a run over six appearances and 8.2 innings as a RailRider.

WHO’S HOT?: Rob Refsnyder went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles, lifting his team-high total to 23 two-base hits. Since the start of July, he has hit .318/.394/.511/.906 at Triple-A. His .373 OBP ranks fifth in the IL. Jose Pirela went 2-for-5 with a run scored. Since the All-Star break, he has hit .384/.434/.521/.954. If he had enough plate appearances to qualify, his average would rank second in the league.

WHO’S NOT?: Slade Heathcott went 0-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts. In four games played on his latest SWB tenure, he has gone 1-for-14 with two walks and five strikeouts. Aaron Judge went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts for his third career golden sombrero and his first at Triple-A. Over his last seven games he has gone 2-for-25 with three walks against 14 strikeouts (.080/.179/.240/.419).

SEÑOR TRANQUILO: Former SWB ace Luis Severino took a tough-luck loss in his MLB debut versus Boston last night. MLB’s youngest starter this season allowed two runs (one earned) on just two hits and no walks while striking out seven.

SWING AND A MISS: The RailRiders struck out a season-high-tying 14 times last night. The club also won (2-1) when it whiffed 14 times at Rochester on June 6.

Bird Homers Twice, RailRiders Roll

Davies Posts Team-Best Eighth Win

Columbus, Ohio – The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) rode the hot hitting of Greg Bird to a 7-2 series-tying win in Columbus against the Clippers (Cleveland Indians) on Wednesday night.

Bird crushed a pair of two-run homers and picked up his first Triple-A triple en route to a 3-for-5 showing with four RBIs. His first blast, which made it beyond the fence and onto Nationwide Boulevard, came in the first inning for a 2-0 lead. His third-inning triple was promptly followed by a Gary Sanchez sac fly that made it 3-0.

Columbus drew within a run in the fourth with back-to-back RBI doubles from Erik Gonzalez and Anthony Gallas off starter Kyle Davies. A former Clipper, Davies (8-6) picked up his team-best eighth win with five innings of two-run ball.

Bird took Columbus starter Josh Tomlin (1-2) out of the yard again in the fifth, this team hitting the top of the video board in right-center. Cole Figueroa singled in a sixth-inning insurance run while IL All-Star Austin Romine did the same in the eighth.

Tomlin struck out a season-best eight, but allowed six runs on 10 hits in six innings for the loss.

The RailRiders improved to 62-50 while Columbus fell to 61-50.

Right-hander Kyle Haynes (0-1, 9.00) is scheduled to face fellow righty Jarrett Grube (4-0, 2.75) in the rubber match at 7:05 p.m. on Thursday night.

The RailRiders return home to PNC Field for a short four-game run against the Pawtucket Red Sox (Boston Red Sox) starting Monday night at 7:05 p.m. Below are the highlights each day:

Mon., Aug. 10 – Bark in the Bark 2 presented by Veterinary Referral and Emergency Clinic.  Bring your dog to the park, free dog refuse bags/holder to the first 500 dogs through the gates.  Lawn seating only available for guests choosing to bring their four-legged friends.  All dogs will need to be leashed, with current shot records and license for entry.

Tue., Aug. 11 – National Call 811 Before You Dig Night presented by 811 Call Before You Dig, UGI, PPL, USIC and UGI Energy.  It’s also Gildan National Tour Night.  Gildan will be on hand with product sampling and giveaways.

Wed., Aug. 12 – The iconic Budweiser Clydesdales will be making their way to PNC Field courtesy of Budweiser and the RailRiders’ friends at Northeast Eagle Distributors.  Fans will be treated to a pre-game on-field parade as well as access to the horses throughout the game for photo ops.

Thu., Aug. 13 – Join the fun with the RailRiders’ Thirsty Thursday.  $1 Drafts and Pepsi products courtesy of Budweiser from 6-8 p.m. and live music from Dashboard Mary.

For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.

– SWB RailRiders Baseball – The Place to Be! –

SWB Game Notes 8-5-15

CLICK HERE for the Aug. 5 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.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The RailRiders allowed nine extra-base hits (2HR, 7-2B) in a 6-4 series-opening loss to the Clippers last night at Huntington Park

QUALITY EFFORT: Starter Kyle Davies settled for a no-decision last time out Friday versus Columbus, but logged his sixth quality start over his last seven nods. The lone exception in that time saw him fire five scoreless innings at Indianapolis. Over this seven-start span, Davies has gone 2-1 with a 2.25 ERA, .213 batting average against and 1.07 WHIP. Against his former club, the Clippers, he allowed two runs on seven hits and one walk over seven innings. He went 2-0 in July with a 1.89 ERA over six starts. He shares the team lead in wins, but also shares the lead in losses (6). Part of the reason has been run support. He gets just 3.6 runs/start including a total of nine runs in his six setbacks (1.5/loss).

RUN PRODUCER: Gary Sanchez went 3-for-4 with a homer and three RBIs. Through 15 games played at Triple-A, he has knocked in 16 runs with a walk total (9) that more than doubles his strikeout sum (4). He has gone 16-for-49 for slashes of .327/.424/.633/1.056.

DEBUT DITTIES: Brady Lail (0-1) fell in his Triple-A debut. The 21-year-old allowed six runs (five earned) on nine hits and three walks over 4.1 innings. He surrendered the two home runs and four of the doubles while tossing 92 pitches (56 strikes). Including his July 30 loss at Bowie, he has suffered losses in back-to-back starts for the first time since setbacks on June 2 and 7, 2014 while with Low-A Charleston. He allowed as many home runs last night as he did over his first 111.1 innings between Adv.-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton.

WHAT A RELIEF: Relievers James Pazos and Nick Goody combined to toss four frames of scoreless baseball behind Lail. The ‘pen has allowed just four runs (two earned) over its last 41 innings since the July 23 win at Indianapolis. The ‘pen owns a collective 2.78 ERA compared to a 3.89 mark for the starting staff.

WHY SO SERIESOUS?: SWB has exceeded its win total against Columbus from last season. The 2014 RailRiders went 1-7 versus the Clippers, getting outscored 79-39. Going back to 2013, the Clippers had claimed 14 straight meetings before SWB won the final 2014 clash, a 5-1 final on Aug. 10 in Moosic. That made for Columbus’ longest successful run in series history. It trumped a 12-game domination from June 1, 1993-April 9, 1994 when the then-Red Barons got outscored 97-27.

CLOSE CALLS: Despite the lopsided nature of wins and losses in recently, the RailRiders and Clippers have seen 16 of their last 29 clashes decided by one run.

FIRST TIME IN A LONG TIME: The RailRiders’ series win over Columbus made for the SWB franchise’s first against the Clippers in NEPA since the last Red Barons swept Dave Miley‘s Clippers in a four-game set April 18-21, 2006.

HOW THE WEST WAS WON: SWB has guaranteed itself a winning record against IL West squads. At 14-8, even an 0-6 road trip would leave it a game above .500. The home portion of the schedule saw the RailRiders post a 9-4 mark against IL West teams at PNC Field with winning marks against Toledo (3-0), Columbus (2-1) and Indianapolis (2-1). They split four games with Louisville (2-2).

LOOKING AHEAD: After this road trip, the RailRiders will face only divisional competition the rest of the way. They will have 28 games left with the home-road divide split evenly at 14 apiece. The end of the schedule will be loaded with road games for the IL’s best road team. Eleven of the squad’s last 15 games will be played outside of NEPA.

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