MOOSIC, Pa. – Outfielder Ben Gamel iced a Friday night thriller on a diving catch of a line drive in left-center as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders rallied to beat the Columbus Clippers 3-2 at PNC Field. The RailRiders (60-48) claimed their fourth in row and have won nine of their last 10 games. The Clippers (59-48) have lost three straight.
Tied 2-2 going to the last of the eighth, Austin Romine vaulted the RailRiders in front on a solo home run to right. The opposite field shot was his seventh of the year.
Reliever Branden Pinder (1-3) got the win thanks to Romine’s home run after a scoreless eighth. Andrew Bailey earned the save in his debut with SWB. Dustin Molleken(5-3) shouldered the loss after allowing the round-tripper to Romine in the eighth.
Starter Kyle Davies ate up seven innings for the RailRiders, limiting the Clippers to two runs on seven hits. The right-hander walked one and struck out three. Jarret Grube went six scoreless in the start for Columbus, yielding only four runners.
Columbus cracked the seal in the sixth on a solo homer by Jesus Aguilar just fair of the left foul pole. A two-out single by Audy Ciriaco scored Erik Gonzalez in the seventh for a 2-0 lead.
The RailRiders rallied against the Clippers’ bullpen in the bottom of the seventh. Greg Bird singled and Slade Heathcott worked a walk off Giovanni Soto. Trey Haley entered and uncorked a wild pitch, advancing the runners into scoring position. Jose Pirela beat out an infield single to plate Bird and Cole Figueroa tied the score on a sacrifice fly to left.
Bailey got the first two outs in the ninth before yielding a long double to Ciriaco. Jose Ramirez worked a 2-2 count before sending a liner to the left gap. Gamel made a head-long, diving grab to preserve the lead and the win.
The RailRiders look to capture the series from the Columbus Clippers (Cleveland Indians) on Saturday night. First pitch at PNC Field is set for 7:05 p.m. The first 2,500 fans through the gates receive a RailRiders hat. A starter for SWB has not been announced. The Clippers are expected to send out right-hander Toru Murata (9-4, 2.6). For more information please call (570) 969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.