Fog may have rolled in and out of the Ballpark at Harbor Yard on Friday evening, but the Lancaster Barnstormers played crystal clear baseball in a 6-2 victory over the host Bridgeport Bluefish.
With the win, the Barnstormers remained in a tie with the Sugar Land Skeeters at the top of the Freedom Division.
The Barnstormers got a solid 6 1/3 innings from Rommie Lewis (2-1). Lewis worked 6 1/3 innings, allowing six singles and three walks while striking out six. Lancaster’s bullpen nailed down the win with 2 2/3 shutout innings with R.J. Hively, John Anderson and Scott Shuman combining on the effort.
In addition, the Barnstormers were flawless in the field, turning two double plays in the process.
It was a three-run Lancaster seventh that gave the Barnstormers’ pitching staff the lift it needed. With his club trailing, 2-1, third baseman Kevin Ahrens ignited the rally with a one-out solid single into center. He scored when Vladimir Frias launched a double to deep left center, tying the game at 2-2. Frias took third on a fly ball by Anderson De La Rosa and scored the go-ahead run on Darian Sandford’s drag bunt single up the first base line.
Caleb Gindl followed with a sinking liner toward the right center field alley. The ball skipped past Ozney Guillen’s shoestring attempt. Daniel Fields backed up the play, but third base coach Josh Bell never hesitated to send Sandford. He scored easily on a wide throw to the plate.
Lancaster tacked on two more in the eighth on a two-out RBI double by Ahrens followed by Frias’ base hit into center.
Sean Burroughs and Jose Cuevas each picked up two of Bridgeport’s eight singles in the game.
The two clubs reconvene Saturday at 6:10. Lancaster will send right-hander Elih Villanueva to the hill against fellow righty Charles Brewer (1-0). Fans may tune into the Barnstormers’ YouTube Channel beginning at 5:50.
NOTES: Sandford stole two bases in the third inning to retake the league lead with 12…Frias has driven in seven runs against Bridgeport in the five games…Gindl had his sixth multi-hit game in the last eight contests…Lancaster reached double figures in hits for the eighth time in the last 11 games…The game started 53 minutes late due to the combination of a wet field and the fog.