Bees Take Second Straight, 3-1
Both the New Britain Bees and the Lancaster Barnstormers had a bases loaded, one-out chance in the late innings on Wednesday evening.
Lancaster did not convert. New Britain did.
Steve Carrillo drove a two-run double into right center field in the eighth inning to lead the New Britain Bees to a 3-1 victory over the Barnstormers at Clipper Magazine Stadium.
The victory moved New Britain to within one-half game of Sugar Land for a wild card berth in the 2016 Atlantic League playoffs while the Barnstormers remain six games out in the Freedom Division.
Kyle Simon (7-5) retired 18 batters in succession before K.C. Hobson lined a one-out single into center field in the seventh. Josh Bell grounded a single through the right side. Sean Halton followed with a seeing-eye single up the middle, but the Barnstormers were forced to hold Hobson at third. Simon retired Blake Gailen on a shallow pop fly to left field for the second out. Kevin Ahrens rapped into a force play to end the inning.
In the top of the eighth, Craig Maddox lined a leadoff single into right off Tanner Peters (5-4). Peters struck out Cole Garner, but Michael Crouse launched a double off the base of the wall in center field, sending Maddox to third. Pete Andrelczyk took over from Peters, and the Barnstormers sent Jon Griffin to first on an intentional walk. Carrillo took Andrelczyk’s first pitch into the gap in right center, scoring Maddox and Crouse. Griffin was thrown out at the plate on a perfect relay.
Each club scored an unorthodox run in the first inning. James Skelton opened the night with a single off Luis Gonzalez and moved up on Greg Golson’s bunt. Jovan Rosa hit a bounder to third, but Bell skipped a throw past Hobson, giving the Bees runners at second and third. Maddox delivered a sacrifice fly to produce the only run of the night off Luis Gonzalez.
Simon walked Caleb Gindl, and Trayvon Robinson chopped a single into center to get the Barnstormers underway. Hobson stroked a grounder to second, but Carrillo made a momentary bobble costing his club the opportunity for a double play. With a 3-2 count on Bell, Hobson broke for second. Bell struck out swinging, and Skelton fired through. Hobson put on the brakes and stayed in a rundown barely long enough for Gindl to score from third.
Eric Fornataro and Shawn Gilblair each pitched a hitless inning to close out the night with Gilblair earning his 20th save.
Lancaster will send Joe Gardner (2-0) to the mound on Thursday evening against Mike Lee (3-0, 7-5), who was sent from Lancaster to New Britain in July.
NOTES: Hobson’s single extended a hitting streak to nine games…Lancaster only has 10 hits in the first two games of the series..The club has not hit a home run…Gonzalez has allowed only six hits and one earned run in 14 innings over two starts…Lancaster’s bullpen put together a stretch of 12 2/3 scoreless innings before the Carrillo double.