Scrappers offense explodes in 14-2 win
Mahoning Valley wins consecutive games for first time since last August
Batavia, NY- Following a night in which the Scrappers scored seven runs mostly due to the struggles of the Jamestown Jammers’ pitching and defense, the offense officially arrived Thursday at Dwyer Stadium, unleashing 16 hits and ultimately sealing an easy 14-2 victory.
The win brings Mahoning Valley to .500 in the early season as the team is now sitting at 2-2. Over the past two nights, the Scrappers' offense has erupted for 21 runs after failing to score in the first two games of the 2013 season. Prior to last night’s home win against Jamestown, Mahoning Valley hadn’t scored in 33 consecutive innings, dating back to the 2012 campaign.
The offense made amends for the previous drought in a huge way Thursday, as every starter reached base at least once. The onslaught began with three runs in the first two innings, prior to a brief intermission until the fifth where it exploded for eight runs. The offense tacked on three in the top of the ninth for good measure.
Leading the charge was Claudio Bautista, who finished the day going 4-for-5 with a double, four RBI, two runs scored, and a stolen base. Robel Garcia added three hits of his own, including a double, two RBI and one run.
Shortstop Juan Herrera, designated hitter Nick Hamilton, and right fielder Juan Romero each tacked on two hits, combining for four RBI and three runs scored. Martin Cervenka, Nellie Rodriguez, and Brian Ruiz each added an RBI for Mahoning Valley.
The Scrapper bullpen also continued to deal Thursday. Following Wednesday’s chaotic victory that saw the bullpen throw 5 1/3 scoreless innings, Thursday’s collective effort was equally impressive, with four pitchers combining to throw 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball, with that run being of the unearned variety in the fourth inning. James Stokes earned his first victory of the year, throwing 1 1/3 innings, allowing only the unearned run on two hits. Joshua Nervis threw two scoreless innings while striking out four. Rafael Hombert also hurled two innings, allowing just one hit. Alexis Paredes closed the game out with one perfect inning.
Mahoning Valley starting pitcher Michael Goodnight struggled through 2 2/3 inning before exiting the game due to an apparent shoulder injury, the extent of which is still unknown. Goodnight finished the night allowing one run on one hit and four walks while striking out one.
For Batavia, who now sit at 1-3, the pitching struggled throughout the evening. Starting pitcher Justin Jackson took his first loss of the season, lasting four innings, allowing three runs on four hits and three walks. Patrick Merkling started the fifth inning on the bump but failed to record an out, surrendering seven earned runs on three hits and four walks. C.J. Robinson, Reid Redman, and Junior Rincon combined to throw five innings of four-run ball.
Thursday’s win gives the Scrappers consecutive victories for the first time since August 23 and 24 2012, a stretch that spanned 16 games. The Scrappers will play two more in Batavia before returning home for five straight against Auburn and State College Sunday through Thursday. Friday’s game will be a 7:05 p.m. start, pitting Mahoning Valley’s Joshua Nervis against Batavia’s Max Garner.