The Aberdeen IronBirds reversed a two-game losing skid on Monday night, defeating the visiting Williamsport Crosscutters, 3-1 at Ripken Stadium.
The win put Aberdeen at 15-12 for the season, and through Monday's contest the IronBirds trail first-place Hudson Valley (17-12) by one game in the McNamara Division standings. Tied with Aberdeen in second place is Staten Island (15-12), while Brooklyn (12-16) sits at the bottom, 3.5 games behind the IronBirds.
Williamsport scored once in the opening inning, but was shut down the rest of the way by Aberdeen hurlers Steven Brault and Mitch Horacek.
Brault started and went three innings, allowing one earned run on five hits, striking out one and allowing zero walks. Horacek (2-1) came on in the fourth and pitched the balance of the game to earn the win. Over six innings, the IronBird reliever struck out three, did not allow a walk walks, and held the visitors to three hits.
Mike Yastrzemski pounded out Aberdeen lone extra base hit, a double, going 1-for-3 with one RBI and one run scored. Hector Veloz was 2-for-4 with one RBI and one run, while Austin Wynns went 1-for-3 with one RBI. Jared Breen was 1-for-4 with one run scored.
Second straight loss
The IronBirds fell behind early and despite a good effort, couldn't recover Sunday evening and lost, 8-6, to the Williamsport Crosscutters on Autism Awareness night.
In Sunday's loss, IronBirds starter Janser Severino walked the first batter of the game then gave up three hits and two more walks to put the his team in a 4-0 hole before they came to the plate.
By the time Severino was knocked out of the game in the third inning, the Crosscutters were up 6-0.
The IronBirds chipped away at Williamsport's lead, but weren't able to catch up. They scored once in the third and fourth innings, then two in the fifth, but Williamsport responded with a run of its own in the next inning.
With two down the seventh inning, Trey Mancini doubled and Conor Bierfeldt tripled him home. Mike Yastrzemski followed with a two-out knock of his own, a single to right, and the IronBirds were only down by one. That was it for the scoring, however, and the Crosscutters scored again in the eighth to put the score at 8-6.
Mancini had a good night at the plate, going 3-for-5 with two doubles, an RBI and a run scored. Mike Yastrzemski continued with his hot bat, going 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI.
And the IronBirds Jared Breen, 2-for-3 with two walks and a run scored, extended his hitting streak to 16 straight games, one short of the IronBirds' record set by future major leaguer Brandon Fahey in 2002.
Game one loss
Returning to action Saturday after a rainy and suspended Friday night game in Aberdeen, the IronBirds welcomed the Williamsport Crosscutters to town for the first of three games at Ripken Stadium.
Williamsport (14-11), anchored by a six-run eighth inning rally, took game one, 9-2.
Aberdeen, also 14-11, was locked in tight game, trailing 3-2, when the Crosscutters erupted for the six runs.
Conor Bierfeldt highlighted the IronBirds efforts, belting a solo home run in the fifth inning. A Jared Breen double and Mike Yastrzemski single were the other Aberdeen hits.
Sebastian Vader took the loss, working five and two third innings, allowing six hits and three earned runs. Vader struck out five.
Friday night washout
Friday night's Aberdeen IronBirds game was suspended in the bottom of the third inning with the IronBirds leading 6-1. Aberdeen (14-10) built the early lead thanks to three-run rallies in each of the first two innings.
No makeup date has been announced.
Fans with tickets for the game can fill out the IronBirds' Ticket Refund/Exchange Form, which can be found on the IronBirds' website, http://www.IronBirdsBaseball.com. Forms can be sent to: Ripken Stadium, c/o July 12th Rain Out 873 Long Drive Aberdeen, MD 21001.
Forms must be received by Aug. 12.
Friday's fireworks show will be rescheduled and a date will be announced at a later time.
Manny Hernandez was having a solid night when play was stopped, driving in three runs with a pair of two-run doubles.
'Birds top Spikes
Playing in the unfamiliar spot of first place, the Aberdeen IronBirds played like McNamara Division leaders Thursday night at Ripken Stadium.
The IronBirds (14-10) scratched out a single run in the second and added two more in the third, while limiting the State College Spikes to a single run in the third for the 3-1 Aberdeen win. It was the IronBirds ninth win in the past 11 games.
Kris Richards led the way with three hits (two doubles) and one RBI. Anthony Vega added two hits and an RBI and Trey Mancini added a single and RBI.
Austin Urban pitched five and two-third innings of relief to earn his first professional win, allowing just two hits and striking out four. Harry Marino picked up his first save with a perfect ninth inning on the mound.