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Dirty Birds Rally for 10-7 Win

Alfredo Gonzalez has had a career series at Clipper Magazine Stadium.  The Charleston slugger belted his fifth home run in five games and drove home four to lead the Dirty Birds to a 10-7 victory over the Lancaster Barnstormers Wednesday evening.

The Barnstormers had built a 6-1 lead over the first four innings.  A fielding error by Gonzalez tied the game at 1-1 in the second.  Anderson Feliz slugged a two-run homer in the third inning to put Lancaster up, 3-1.  Melvin Mercedes clubbed a three-run homer in the fourth to put the Barnstormers into a commanding 6-1 advantage.

Charleston began to whittle away at the Lancaster lead in the top of the fifth.  Angel Garced dribbled a single behind third base.  Scott Kelly was hit by a Nile Ball pitch for the second time in the game.  Ball picked up a strike out of Nick Heath, but Jose Rosario lined a single into center to load the bases.  Gonzalez followed with a soft single into center, scoring one.  Engel Beltre hit a grounder on the right side on which Melvin Mercedes got a force at second as a run scored.  Beltre then beat a throw to second, and Rosario raced home to cut the lead to two.

In the sixth, Donald Goodson walked Tyler Blaum who stole second.  Goodson struck out the next two before Kelly hit a dribbler toward shortstop, Feliz missed a barehanded pickup, and Blaum came across to score as the ball rolled away.

Gonzalez took the game into his hands, belting a two-run homer onto the right field picnic deck off Brett Clarke in the top of the seventh.

Trayvon Robinson slammed his sixth homer of the homestand past the left field walkway to bring the game back into a 7-7 tie. 

Gonzalez had one blow left to turn the tide.  With two outs and Kelly at third in the top of the ninth, Gonzalez, then the catcher, Gonzalez slapped a double down the right field line off Cole Aker (2-2) to break the tie.  Engel Beltre blooped a single to left for a 9-7 lead.  Diego Goris launched a double deep into the left field corner to cap the scoring.

Kevin Siegrist (2-0) pitched a scoreless eighth to earn the win.  Isaac Sanchez retired the side in order in the ninth to pick up the save.

NOTES:  Mercedes’ homer extended his hitting streak to 17 games, three shy of the club record…It was his career-high sixth long ball…Robinson has six homers and 20 RBI in 11 games…Cordero has hit safely in six straight, 12 of 13, 17 of 19, 21 of 24, 28 of 32 and 40 of 46…The Barnstormers once again tied their season high with 15 strikeouts.