RICHMOND, VA – The Richmond Flying Squirrels (35-34) stopped their franchise record seven-game losing streak with a walk-off, 3-2, win over the Binghamton Mets (43-27) in the first game of a doubleheader at The Diamond on Tuesday night. However, the B-Mets bounced back with an, 8-1, victory in the nightcap to split the evening.
In game one, Richmond left-hander Carlos Teller was erratic from the start. He walked the first two batters of the ballgame, and five all told through two innings. However, he did not allow a hit or a run in an abbreviated start.
The Squirrels broke through first against Binghamton righty Erik Goeddel in the top of the second inning. Mark Minicozzi led off the inning and was plunked by Goeddel. He quickly advanced to second on a wild pitch and took third on a ground out from Ricky Oropesa. Andrew Susac struck out, but Jarrett Parker lined a two-out single into center field to put the Squirrels ahead, 1-0.
Teller departed in favor of right-hander Omar Javier in the third inning. Javier couldn’t hold the lead for long, conceding an inning-opening double to Cesar Puello. Allan Dykstra followed and crunched an opposite-field home run to left field. Dykstra’s 11th home run of the year gave the B-Mets the lead, 2-1.
Goeddel settled in and kept the B-Mets in front through the fifth inning. He retired to a no-decision at that point, having conceded just the lone run on four hits. He walked one and struck out six.
Richmond got even against the Binghamton bullpen. Right-hander John Church came on in the sixth and permitted back-to-back singles to start the inning to Adam Duvall and Mark Minicozzi. Duvall moved over on a fly out from Oropesa and scored on a sacrifice fly from Susac to tie the ballgame, 2-2.
The ballgame remained tied into extra-innings before the Squirrels dramatically ended their seven-game losing skid. Lefty Chase Huchingson began the bottom of the eighth inning by issuing a walk to Joe Panik. Adam Duvall bunted him to second and the B-Mets elected to walk Minicozzi. Oropesa struck out swinging, but Susac shoved a game-winning single through the right-side of the infield. Panik just beat the throw to the plate, popping up out of his slide to join a boisterous celebration outside the Richmond dugout.
Huchingson (3-2) took the loss for Binghamton. Richmond lefty Tom Vessella (3-1) earned the win, having worked a scoreless top of the eighth inning. The Squirrels also used lefty Phil McCormick and right-hander Edwin Quirarte in relief in game one. All told, the Squirrels won the ballgame despite 10 walks issued by the five hurlers.
The celebratory feeling didn’t last long for the Squirrels as the B-Mets came out swinging against righty Taylor Rogers in game two. The first five men reached in the top of the first inning, and the first four scored as Binghamton assumed a 4-0 lead. Puello and Xorge Carillo each recorded RBI singles in the inning, while Richard Lucas cracked a two-run single.
Rogers survived a comebacker that struck him in the first inning and returned in the second. He got the first two outs of the inning, but Josh Rodriguez sparked another uprising with a two-out double. Puello then notched another RBI single to make it 5-0.
Rogers lasted into the fourth inning, when the B-Mets chased him with another run on back-to-back doubles. Dykstra knocked in Puello to knock out Rogers, who left trailing 6-0. Rogers (4-4) was saddled with the loss, his fourth of the season. He was charged with six runs, all earned, on eight hits. He walked four, hit another, and struck out one.
Binghamton lefty Darin Gorski (1-0) earned the win in game two over five innings. He conceded just one run, which was knocked in by Panik in the bottom of the fifth inning. Panik plated Ehire Adrianza, who had doubled, with a single into center field. Gorski permitted just three hits, walked three and struck out seven.
Dykstra launched his second two-run home run of the night, taking Ryan Bradley deep to right-center in the sixth inning to cap the scoring for the evening. Dykstra drove in five runs over the course of the doubleheader.
The Squirrels issued 14 bases on balls throughout the course of the doubleheader.
The finale of the three-game series is scheduled for 6:35 p.m. at The Diamond on Thursday night. Richmond LHP Chris Gloor (5-1, 3.57) will make the start against Binghamton RHP Corey Mazzoni (2-2, 4.33). The Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup will begin on Sports Radio 910, SportsRadio910.com and IHeart Radio at 1:35 p.m.
# SQUIRRELS #