TRENTON, NJ – Gary Sanchez’s sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 18th inning scored Eric Jagielo to give the Thunder a victory, 5-4, over the Akron RubberDucks in a game that ended at 12:35am Saturday morning at ARM & HAMMER Park.
Outfielder Taylor Dugas earned the pitching win after surrendering a run in the top of the 18th. Previously, infielder Dan Fiorito threw two scoreless innings.
The game, 5:35 in length, was the longest game in ARM & HAMMER Park history and tied for the longest in franchise history (at Reading, June 14, 1998).
The teams played to a 3-3 tie through the first 17 frames before Akron broke through for a run against Taylor Dugas, the second position player to pitch for the Thunder. Yandy Diaz drove in Erik Gonzalez with a base hit to take a 4-3 lead for the visitors.
In the bottom of the 18th, Aaron Judge led off with a single to right and Eric Jagielo doubled him in with a stroke to left-center. Jagielo moved to third on the throw home and Gary Sanchez drove him home with a fly ball to center.
Friday night was the longest home game in Thunder franchise history (innings), surpassing the 17 inning game on August 18, 1995, a 6-5 Thunder win against the New Haven Ravens.
It was also the first time in franchise history that two position players have pitched in the same game for the Thunder.
The Thunder will continue their three-game series with the RubberDucks on Saturday night at 7:00 pm. The Thunder will throw LHP Miguel Sulbaran (2-0, 2.79), Akron will counter with LHP Shawn Morimondo (1-2, 3.20). Listen live beginning at 6:40pm on 91.3 WTSR and online at Trentonthunder.com.