Four Homers Provide Win in Brawl-Marred Game
Home runs and tempers flew on Sunday afternoon as the Lancaster Barnstormers belted four out of the yard to take a 9-4 decision over the York Revolution in the finale of a three-game series at People’s Bank Park. The game was interrupted by a bench-clearing incident in the top of the third.
Earlier, York rallied from a 5-1 deficit to take a suspended game carried over from Friday night, 6-5.
Sunday’s play left the ‘Stormers three games behind Southern Maryland in the Freedom Division.
Sean Halton jumped the Barnstormers out to a 3-0 lead with his 13th homer of the season, a three-run blast over the 37-foot left field wall with one out in the first inning. It was Halton who was in the midst of the firestorm in the third when he was hit by a Curtis Partch (3-5) offering immediately after K.C. Hobson’s solo shot, his 20th homer of the year.
Halton strode toward the mound, yelling at Partch. The benches cleared, but, in the end, it was Lancaster center fielder Trayvon Robinson and York catcher Isaias Tejeda who were tossed from the game.
Blake Gailen added the Barnstormers’ third homer of the game, a three-run blast to right center in the fourth.
The final home run was belted to right by hitting coach Josh Bell in his first at bat of the season. Bell, activated earlier in the week, was inserted into the game after Vladimir Frias was also thrown out for arguing a fair-foul call in the top of the fourth.
Brad Bergesen (4-5) nearly authored the Barnstormers’ first complete game of the season, but the makeshift defense created some difficulties. Ryan Dent scored an unearned run in the third after reaching base when Frias made a throw too high for Caleb Gindl to handle at first base.
Bell was also guilty of a high throw, extending the fourth inning.
Bergesen took the game into the bottom of the seventh, having allowed seven singles and a walk. He struck out Ryan Dent to start the inning. Travis Witherspoon nearly struck out on a foul tip but got to stay alive and singled. Alonzo Harris doubled past Bell for his eighth hit of the series. Jay Carp, who replaced Tejeda, bounced to third, and Bell tagged Witherspoon for the second out. An error on a Michael Burgess ground ball loaded the bases, and Dayron Varona cleared them with a double to left center.
Kaohi Downing finally put the game to rest, striking out Luis Cruz after hitting Angel Franco with a pitch.
In the opener, the Revs quickly got back into the game as Franco belted a two-run homer off Rommie Lewis, Friday’s starter, in the bottom of the fifth. Dent singled home a run in the seventh off Scott Shuman following a drive by Cruz ticking off Lastings Milledge’s glove for a double.
Travis Witherspoon tied the game with a leadoff homer in the eighth off Cody Hall.
The Barnstormers never got an out in the ninth. Franco led off with a double off the high wall in left and took third on a high bouncing single into left by Varona. Lancaster went to a five-infielder setup, and Cruz lofted a fly ball to right, deep enough to score Franco, which was ultimately dropped by Robinson, ending the game.
New Britain comes to Clipper Magazine Stadium on Monday to start a four-game series. Lancaster will send Nate Reed (1-4) to the mound against Anthony Marzi (4-4). The game will be carried live on Blue Ridge Cable 11 and the Barnstormers YouTube Channel, beginning at 6:30.
NOTES: There were 14 home runs total in the series…The game ended with Clark catching, Gindl at first, Garrett Weber at second, Rico Noel at short, Bell at third, Hobson in left, Milledge in center and Gailen in right…Hobson scored the final Lancaster run on a triple and a passed ball in the seventh…Gailen tied the Barnstormers franchise career record with 273 RBI.