Both Games Slip Away in Sixth
The bottom of the sixth inning proved toxic to the Lancaster Barnstormers in both ends of a Saturday night doubleheader as the Long Island Ducks rallied for 8-6 and 4-3 wins at Fairfield Properties Ballpark.
Lancaster is now 2-6 on its 12-game road trip.
The Barnstormers launched four homers, including two by Kelly Dugan, in the opener, taking a 6-4 lead into the home sixth.
Oscar De La Cruz (2-1) walked Joe DeCarlo to open the bottom of the sixth. Dustin Woodcock grounded a single up the middle to put the tying run on base. Austin Rei dropped a sacrifice bunt toward third, and Trace Loehr’s throw came right out of the sun, blinding second baseman Melvin Mercedes as he covered first. Erik Cha relieved De La Cruz and allowed a single over second base to L.J. Mazzilli, trimming the lead to 6-5. A wild pitch plated the tying run, and Vladimir Frias’ single to center gave the Ducks the lead. A final run scored when Sam Travis delivered a sacrifice fly off Tyler Suellentrop.
Tyler Webb pitched a perfect seventh for his sixth save.
In the nightcap, everything was cut in half. Andretty Cordero had an RBI single in the first, and two other Lancaster runs crossed the plate on throwing errors. Erik Manoah, in his first Atlantic League start, yielded only two runs on three hits in five innings while fanning seven.
The edge got away from the pen, again in the sixth inning. Chase Johnson (1-6) walked Alejandro De Aza, and Travis bounced a single through the left side. Rei’s bunt moved runners to second and third. Rusney Castillo hit a bounder to short, and Melvin Mercedes made a wide throw home as De Aza scored the tying run. De Carlo decided the game with a single to left.
Sandy Baez (3-1) worked through loading the bases in the top of the seventh to earn the win. Nick Goody picked up his third save.
The series concludes on Sunday at 1:35. Lancaster will send Augie Sylk (2-6) to the mound against Joe Iorio (6-1). Fans may tune into the YouTube Channel at 1:30.
NOTES: Dugan tied Lexington’s Courtney Hawkins for the league lead at 21 homers…LeDarious Clark belted his 11th homer and stole his 22nd base in the doubleheader…In the other doubleheader at Long Island this season, both games were also lost in the bottom of the sixth…Shawon Dunston had a hit in both ends of the doubleheader…He has hit safely in nine straight and reached base in 15 in a row.