MOOSIC, PA – The SWB RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) were held scoreless for just the second time this year as the Lehigh Valley IronPigs avoided a PNC Field sweep with a 2-0 win on Wednesday night.
Chad Green (0-3) absorbed a tough-luck loss despite authoring 6.2 strong innings. The right-hander yielded one unearned while scattering three hits. He finished one off his career-best with nine strikeouts and did not walk a batter.
Zach Eflin (3-0) took home the win for Lehigh Valley, blanking the RailRIders over 6.1 innings. He allowed four singles, hit two batters, issued one walk and struck out six. Edward Mujica pitched a perfect ninth to collect his sixth save.
The IronPigs broke a scoreless stalement in the seventh when Brock Stassi began the frame with a single. He moved to third when Rob Refsnyder misplayed a rolling groundball at second and Tommy Joseph reached safely at first. With one away, Will Venable lined out to medium center, resulting in a sacrifice fly as Stassi scored. Joseph cracked his fourth home run off James Pazos in the ninth for the final tally.
The RailRiders are off on Thursday and hit the road for nine games in eight days beginning Friday. SWB opens a four-game series in Rochester with a doubleheader against the Red Wings at Frontier Field. Right-hander Kyle Haynes (1-0, 3.18) is scheduled to face left-hander Pat Dean (0-3, 2.88) in game one. First pitch is set for 5:05 p.m. For tickets or more information, please call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
FUMBLE!: The RailRiders cemented a series win against the IronPigs with a 10-inning, 4-3 win on Tuesday night at PNC Field. With the victory, the RailRiders pulled into a second-place tie with the IronPigs in the IL North.
READY, SET, GO: Donovan Solano reached base four times in five plate appearances, but it was his final trip that proved the most entertaining and impactful. He singled in the 10th with one out; took second on a wild pitch; claimed third on Lane Adams‘ two-out infield hit that loaded the bases; and scored when Andrew Knapp committed a passed ball after a Ben Gamel swing and miss. Solano went 3-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored. Over his last six games, he has gone 9-for-23 (.391) with four RBIs and four runs scored.
ALL ABOUT THE BENJAMIN: Gamel, last season’s IL Rookie of the Year, singled, walked and connected on a sac fly. He leads SWB with six steals and owns a .313 average in 17 games played. Over his last eight games, the usual leadoff man has gone 12-for-29 (.414) with three steals and six runs scored.
PARM CHARM: Chris Parmelee went 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored. After starting the year 2-for-26 (.077) with 10 strikeouts, he has gone 12-for-29 (.414) with four extra-base hits, four RBIs and just six whiffs over eight games.
MULL IT OVER: Conor Mullee (2-0) tossed a perfect 10th for his second win. The right-hander, who has endured three major surgeries on his throwing elbow, has yet to allow a run in seven appearances and 11.2 innings at Triple-A. During that time the IL has mustered three hits and one walk against 17 strikeouts. He debuted as a pro in 2010, missed all of 2011, threw five innings in 2012 and missed all of the 2013 season. Since his healthy return to the field in mid-June 2014, he has progressed from Short Season ball to Triple-A, ascending four levels in barely more than one year.
BELIEVE: On Monday, in his first game playing the outfield this season, Nick Swisher blasted an opposite-field home run as a left-handed hitter and made the game-ending catch in deep right-center. In 10 games with SWB he has gone 14-for-38 with three homers and six RBIs, slashing .368/.405/.632/1.036.
DUAL THREAT: Ten of catcher Gary Sanchez‘s 14 hits on the young year have gone for extra bases: seven doubles, one triple, two homers. He paces the IL’s catchers with 136 total fielding chances and has yet to make an error. He also leads the loop’s backstops with 129 putouts. When he’s been behind the plate, opposing base stealers have been caught four times in six attempts (.667), including the nabbing of longtime big leaguer Will Venable at second base in last night’s fifth inning. That makes for the IL’s best caught-stealing rate among qualifying catchers. A .175 bat through his first 10 games this year, he has gone 7-for-20 (.350) in five games since with four RBIs.
OFF THE RAILS: The RailRiders played an error-free game to keep their season-long total at a slim nine while lifting their fielding percentage to .987…Only Gwinnett has better numbers in the IL with seven errors and a .991 fielding percentage…Lehigh Valley entered this series hitting a league-best .291…The ‘Pigs have gone 12-for-67 (.179) through the set’s first two games…Knapp’s passed ball was his fifth of the year…No other IL team has more than three.
DOWN BELOW: At Double-A last night, Ronald Herrera fired eight no-hit innings versus the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and Jonathan Holder logged a 1-2-3 ninth. The result – the Trenton Thunder’s second no-hitter and first since Tyler Clippard went all nine in a 9-0 win at Harrisburg on Aug. 17, 2006. Herrera struck out eight in a spot start for SWB April 16 versus Syracuse. Meanwhile, Adv.-A Tampa hit six homers including five in the third inning to blow out Dunedin, 11-5. The Baby Bombers hit three straight homers in the gaudy frame and shortstop prospect Jorge Mateo hit the team’s sixth of the game, a three-run shot on a two-hit night. Mateo is slashing .308/.387/.492/.879 in the pitcher-friendly circuit. Earlier today, Trenton two-hit New Hampshire, 1-0. Starter Dietrich Enns (3-0) fired seven scoreless innings for the win. He has yet to allow a run in four starts and 23.2 IP while striking out 25. The EL has gone 9-for-75 (.120) against him. Also today, Low-A Charleston beat Lakewood, 3-2, improving its record to a league-best 15-5.