Long ball propels Squirrels past RubberDucks, 15-5

Richmond Flying SquirrelsThe Richmond Flying Squirrels launched four home runs to run away from the Akron RubberDucks, 15-5, on Friday night at The Diamond.

Richmond (54-51) matched its season high in homers in win over Akron (69-42).

The Flying Squirrels opened the scoring in the first inning with an RBI single by Frankie Tostado against Akron starter Konnor Pilkington (Loss, 3-1).

In the second, Luis Basabe blasted a three-run homer to left, his second with the Flying Squirrels, to open a 4-0 lead.

The RubberDucks closed the gap to 4-1 in the third inning on a run-scoring ground out off the bat of Victor Nova.

Jacob Heyward hit a three-run homer in the fourth inning, his 11th of the season on his second in the last two games. Will Wilson added an RBI single in the inning and David Villar scored on a wild pitch to push Richmond’s lead to 9-1 through four innings.

In the top of the fifth, Brayan Rocchio brought home two runs with a double and Nova scored on a wild pitch to close the RubberDucks back within five runs.

Mitchell Tolman hit an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth and Brandon Martorano followed with the Flying Squirrels’ third three-run homer of the game to stretch the lead to 13-4.

After a run on an error in the top of the seventh for Akron, Tostado lifted a two-run homer to left-center field to close the scoring and give Richmond a 15-5 lead.

Heyward finished the game 1-for-3 with three RBIs. His second walk, which came in the fifth inning, was the 113th of his Flying Squirrels career, tying him with Ricky Oropesa (2012-16) for the most career walks in team history.

Aaron Blair started on the mound for Richmond and allowed four runs, three in the fifth inning, over 4.1 innings. Matt Seelinger (Win, 3-1) replaced him in the fifth and worked around a pair of walks with two strikeouts to strand the bases loaded.

Patrick Ruotolo picked up two strikeouts in the seventh and allowed one unearned run. R.J. Dabovich and Joey Marciano worked through the final two innings, each picking up a strikeout.

Pilkington allowed four runs over 3.0 innings, the highest run total surrendered since joining the Cleveland organization in July.

The Flying Squirrels’ final homestand of 2021 continues on Saturday night as the team salutes the kids from the ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation. The team will wear special custom jerseys featuring the blue and yellow ASK colors and each are individual designed and colored by ASK Kids. The jerseys are being auctioned to benefit the ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation. Bidding is currently open here. The night will also include In-Your-Face Fireworks following the game. First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m. and the ballpark gates open at 5 p.m.

Tickets are available online at SquirrelsBaseball.com/Tickets, by phone at 804-359-3866 or in person at the Flying Squirrels offices.


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