RICHMOND, VA – The Binghamton Mets (44-27) earned a series win over the reeling Richmond Flying Squirrels (35-35), claiming a, 4-3, victory in front of 7,081 at The Diamond on Thursday night. With the loss, the Squirrels finished their six-game home stand with a record of 1-5, having dropped both three-game sets.
Richmond grabbed the lead in the second inning, plating a run against Binghamton righty Cory Mazzoni. Mazzoni walked Mark Minicozzi to start the inning and Ricky Oropesa singled behind the free pass. An out later, Ryan Lollis slapped an RBI single up the third-base line. Minicozzi came in from second for a 1-0 lead.
Mazzoni sparked the B-Mets in the third as they vaulted to their first lead. Mazzoni cracked a first-pitch fastball from lefty Chris Gloor for a single into left field. After Gloor retired Daniel Muno, Josh Rodriguez laced a double through the left-center field alley to put runners at second and third. Gloor got the second out, but walked Allan Dykstra to load the bases. Richard Lucas then notched a two-run single through the left-side of the infield, pushing Binghamton in front, 2-1.
Binghamton stretched their lead with an unearned run off Gloor in the fourth inning. Blake Forsythe led off the inning and reached on a two-base error on third baseman Adam Duvall. Forsythe then stole third and scored for a 3-1 advantage on a single from Alonzo Harris.
Minicozzi got the Squirrels started as they pulled even in the bottom of the fourth. Minicozzi singled to right field to spark the inning. He stole second base and scored two outs later when Muno, the shortstop, threw wildly to first base on a ground ball from Lollis. Lollis advanced to second on the throw, which wound up in the stands. Mark Wagner followed and rifled an RBI single into left field to tie the ballgame, 3-3.
The B-Mets forged back ahead in the seventh inning, also forcing Gloor from the ballgame. Harris started the inning with a bunt-single. An out later, Gloor walked Muno before departing the ballgame. Righty Scott Shuman came on and got the second out before walking Travis Taijeron to load the bases. Shuman was lifted in favor of lefty Phil McCormick. He entered and promptly walked Dykstra to force home Harris. It turned into the decisive run in the ballgame.
Gloor (5-2) was doomed to the loss, dealt his second defeat of the season despite another strong showing. Gloor lasted at least six innings for the eight consecutive outing. Over 6 1/3 innings, he allowed four runs – three earned – on seven hits. He walked three and struck out four.
The Binghamton rally in the seventh inning turned Mazzoni (3-2) into the winner. He had been lifted after six innings, having allowed three runs – one earned – on five hits. He walked one and struck out eight.
The B-Mets used three relievers to finish the ballgame. Lefty Jim Fuller worked 1 1/3 innings, while John Church recorded the final two outs of the eighth inning. Right-hander closer Jeff Walters then earned his league-leading 17th save of the year after he worked a scoreless ninth inning.
The Squirrels will travel to Reading, PA, on Friday and open a three-game series with the Reading Fightin Phils (Philadelphia Phillies) at 7:05 at FirstEnergy Stadium. Richmond RHP Craig Westcott (5-1, 3.57) will make the start against Reading RHP David Buchanan (3-7, 4.65). The Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup will begin on Sports Radio 910, SportsRadio910.com and IHeart Radio at 6:35 p.m.
# SQUIRRELS #