The Barnstormers won their fourth straight on Tuesday night 5-3 after Sean Halton slammed a two-run home run to right field in the seventh inning against the Blue Fish.
The homer, Halton’s seventh of the season, broke a tie game. Bridgeport was never able to answer and the Blue Fish are now 11 games below .500. As for Lancaster, they are 33-31 and 3.5 games back in the Freedom Division. York currently sits atop in first place, and Sugar Land is in second.
The Barnstormers got on the scoreboard first and they never let Bridgeport starter D.J. Mitchell get into a groove. In the first inning Blake Gailen, Kevin Ahrens, and Caleb Gindl each singled to load the bases with no outs. Josh Whitaker and Josh Bell followed and both picked up RBI’s on sacrifice flies and Lancaster led 2-0 after the first inning.
Lancaster added another run in the second inning. K.C. Hobson led off the inning with a single, but was forced out at second when Charlie Cutler grounded into a fielder’s choice. Cutler would get to second with a Justin Jackson single, and ended up scoring after a wild pitch and defensive miscues by the Blue Fish.
Finding himself in a quick three-run deficit, Mitchell settled back in after the second inning. He ended up going five innings and allowing three earned runs on eight hits, three walks and five strikeouts. Eric Niesen took his third loss of the year after giving up Halton’s home run in the seventh.
Bridgeport got a rally of their own going in the fifth inning off of Lancaster starter Bryan Evans. Josh Vitters and Luis Nunez got on base with singles, and Angelys Nina plated both of them with a two-RBI double.
Evans came out of the game after six innings. Evans battled rain for the second time in a row after having to sit an hour during Thursday’s rain delay and still coming out to pitch two innings when play resumed. He allowed two earned runs on five hits (no walks) and six strikeouts. For the second game in a row, a Lancaster starter did not walk any hitters in his appearance.
Bridgeport added another run in the seventh inning. Josh Vitters led off and doubled off of Scott Gracey, and scored on an error by Hobson. After this, Gracey came out of the game with 0.2 of an inning pitched, and Al Yevoli got the final out.The run was charged to Gracey.
Yevoli got the first out of the eighth inning, so the win was given to him. He is now 1-2. Cory Burns earned his 13th save with his ninth inning appearance.
Josh Bell continued his hitting streak, which now stands at 14 games. The season high is 18, done by Mike McDade, who is currently on paternity leave.
Looking ahead: The Barnstormers now lead this four-game series against the Blue Fish 2-0. Game 3 takes place at 7:00 pm tomorrow night at Clipper Magazine Stadium. The pitching match-up will be Bridgeport’s Jonathan Albaladejo (RHP, 5-3. 5.03 ERA) vs Lancaster’s Terry Doyle (RHP, 2-3, 4.12 ERA).