The Barnstormers put on a power show with two outs in the ninth inning on Wednesday night.
A double by Caleb Gindl broke a 2-2 tie, and a two-run homer by Destin Hood provided insurance as the Barnstormers grabbed a 6-2 victory over the Somerset Patriots at TD Bank Park in Bridgewater, NJ.
Melvin Mercedes opened the ninth with a single to left off Chris Beck (0-1) and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Darian Sandford. K.C. Hobson flied to right for the second out before Gindl doubled to center to give Lancaster its first lead of the night. Joe Terdoslavich added an RBI single into center and moved to second on a bad throw by Michael Crouse. Hood then unloaded his eighth homer of the season to cap the scoring.
Starter John Anderson battled through the first 5 2/3 innings but kept Lancaster in the game. The left-hander allowed nine hits and three walks but was masterful at working out of tight jams.
He yielded a run in the second on Alfredo Rodriguez’ single to right, after almost forcing the Patriots to waste a leadoff triple by Crouse. In the fourth, Yovan Gonzalez picked up a leadoff walk and moved to second on a bunt single by Scott Kelly, who went 4-for-4 for the Patriots. Rodriguez moved the runners to second and third with a sacrifice, and Will Kengor made it 2-0 with a pop fly single into center. Kelly was thrown out trying to steal third, and Edwin Espinal struck out swinging to end the inning.
Overall, nine of Anderson’s baserunners were stranded, including the final two when Garrett Granitz entered from the left field bullpen to whiff Kengor for the final out in the sixth.
Hobson led the Barnstormers recovery. In the fifth, he walked with two outs, as did Gindl. Terdoslavich came through with a single into right to get the first run home. Hobson also belted his second homer off the series, a drive to right with one out in the seventh, to tie the game against lefty reliever Luis Cruz.
Logan Sawyer (2-1), the losing pitcher on Tuesday, pitched a perfect eighth inning to earn the win.
The Barnstormers and Patriots play the final game of the season series on Thursday evening. Lancaster will send right-hander Jonathan Albaladejo (2-8) to the mound against Somerset lefty David Holmberg (1-5). Fans may tune into the Barnstormers YouTube Channel, starting at 6:45.
NOTES: Anderson struck out eight, increasing his season total to 122…He needs eight to tie Bryan Evans (2016) for the single season ‘Stormers record…Darian Sandford hit safely in his ninth straight game with a single in the second…He stole his 59th base of the season and 186th as a Barnstormer, moving him within five of fifth place in league history…Hood’s last two homers have come at Somerset…Scott Shuman pitched the ninth, tossing scoreless baseball for the 16th time in his last 17 appearances.