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Mark Payton (Photo by Martin Griff)

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Payton’s Effort Helps Thunder Win Series

TRENTON, NJ – The Trenton Thunder bats exploded for the most hits in nearly a month, as a 15-hit parade paced a 10-2 win over the Hartford Yard Goats at ARM & HAMMER Park Sunday afternoon.

The Thunder took 2-of-3 from the Goats as the road with the win, before 578 fans, and moved to 7.0 Seen ahead of Hartford for the second playoff spot in the East Division with 15 games left in the regular season. The Thunder now trail the rival Reading Fightin Phils by 4.5 games for the top spot in the division after Reading’s 12-4 loss to the Erie SeaWolves Sunday afternoon in Erie.

The two teams traded runs over the first two innings, and the game was tied 2-2 heading to the 4th inning. The Thunder offense belted out six runs on seven hits in the frame, with all the damage coming off Hartford’s starting pitcher, Carlos Hernandez. The southpaw, Hernandez, allowed eight earned runs over 4.0 innings on 12 hits in the loss—exiting with the Thunder ahead 8-2.

Trenton added two more runs in the 6th inning to make it 10-2, due to a two-run double by Mark Payton. The top five men in the Thunder lineup- Tyler Wade, Dustin Fowler, Miguel Andujar, Mike Ford and Payton- each had multi-hit games, with Payton (3-for-4, 2B, 4 RBIs) the lone batter with a three-hit game. Eight of the nine men in the lineup for Trenton had hits, with Francisco Diaz the lone exception even though the Thunder catcher reached twice on walks.

Will Carter earned his first Double-A win by going six innings and allowing two runs. Once the Thunder offense staked him to a multi-run lead, he never looked back. Caleb Smith was the one man used out of the bullpen for Trenton, and he went three hitless innings while striking out five men for his third save of the season.

The Thunder welcome the Bowie Baysox to town Monday night for the penultimate home series of the season. The ballgame is Football and Cheerleading Night at the ballpark so wear your best football jersey or cheer outfit when you arrive. First pitch is set for 7:00 p.m. with pregame coverage beginning at 6:40 p.m. on 91.3 FM and online at www.trentonthunder.com

This post is a press release courtesy of the Trenton Thunder Media Relations Department.

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