INDIANAPOLIS. IND – Richard Bleier and three relievers combined on a four-hit shutout and Gary Sanchez fueled the offense with a blasted home run as the SWB RailRiders (Triple-A/New York Yankees) beat the Indianapolis Indians (Pittsburgh Pirates) at Victory Field on Sunday afternoon, 2-0. The RailRiders (26-19) have won nine of 11 including a 5-2 road trip. The Indians (21-21) lost a home series to SWB for the first time in six years.
Bleier (2-2) gave up just three hits and two walks over his six innings of work, inducing a dozen groundouts along the way. He left with the lead thanks to Sanchez’s sixth home run of the season, a two-run no-doubter to left in the sixth inning off of the Pirates No. 1 prospect according to Baseball America, Tyler Glasnow (3-2).
Newcomer Neal Cotts tossed a perfect seventh in his SWB debut, James Pazos logged a scoreless and hitless eighth and Mark Montgomery worked around a Willy Garcia single in the ninth for his second save.
The RailRiders return home for a short three-game series and homestand against the Louisville Bats (Cincinnati Reds) on Tuesday, May 24 at 6:35 p.m. The $2 Twosday features $2 lawn seats (walk-up only), $2 tacos and $2 tall boy beers. For tickets or more information, please call 570-969-BALL (2255) or visit swbrailriders.com.
OFF THE RAILS:
Gary Sanchez’s home run gave him a team-best 26 RBIs, snapping a tie with Aaron Judge. Sanchez also recorded his third stolen base of the season when he swiped second in the fourth inning.
Cesar Puello doubled on a 2-for-3 day with a walk.
Both of Mark Montgomery’s saves have come against Indianapolis in each of his last two outings. He had three total saves spread over his first three seasons and 54 outings with the RailRiders from 2013-15.
Al Pedrique’s club earned its sixth shutout win. Entering Sunday, only Indianapolis (8) owned more shutout triumphs.
The RailRiders went 0-for-5 with men in scoring position on Sunday and 3-for-26 on the series.
SWB’s hitters finished the game with 10 hits and 13 strikeouts.
The team stands a season-best seven games above .500.
The RailRiders finished the regular season 5-1 against the Indians. Indianapolis beat the RailRiders in last year’s first-round playoff series.
The entire IL North is off on Monday. The defending division champion RailRiders will enter their upcoming homestand in sole possession of first place in the division with a league-best 26 wins.