Lynchburg Hillcats split doubleheader
The Lynchburg Hillcats notched their first walk-off win of the season in game one of the double-header on Wednesday, when they defeated the Winston-Salem Dash, 4-3, at City Stadium.
Conner Capel walked to lead off the bottom of the seventh inning and Li-Jen Chu ripped a walk-off double to the right-center gap.
The Hillcats had an early lead in game one, when Capel lined a two-run single in the first inning to put Lynchburg ahead, 2-0.
Micker Adolfo got a run back for the Dash in the second inning when he blasted a solo home run.
In the fourth, Lynchburg made it a 3-1 game when Gavin Collins hit an RBI double to score Mitch Longo who reached on a two out walk.
The Dash evened the contest with two runs in the fifth. Adolfo reached on a walk and Gavin Sheets singled to put two runners on with one out. Yermin Mercedes then hit an RBI double to score Adolfo and Yeyson Yrizarri followed with a sacrifice fly to plate Sheets to tie the game, 3-3.
Longo extended his hitting streak to 10 games and pushed his consecutive on-base streak to 16 games to start the 2018 season.
Hillcats starter Zach Plesac allowed one run on three hits in four innings. He struck out four and walked five. Billy Strode was the first pitcher out of the bullpen and surrendered two runs on three hits in two innings of work. Dalbert Siri (Win, 1-1), pitched a scoreless seventh inning before Chu’s game-winning hit in the bottom of the seventh.
Dash starter Dylan Cease gave up three unearned runs on four hits in 3.2 innings. He walked six and struck out six. Drew Hasler pitched 2.1 scoreless innings for Winston-Salem and Mike Morrison (Loss, 3-1) allowed the winning run in the seventh.
Micker Adolfo drove in five runs for the Dash, including an opposite field three run home run in the fifth, as the Hillcats lost to Winston Salem, 9-3.
The Dash struck for two runs in the first inning against Tanner Tully (Loss, 1-1). Joel Booker led off with a double down the right field line, and advanced to third on a single to right by Alex Call. Call was gunned down on the bases by Jose Medina who threw behind him at first base as he rounded the bag. Luis Basabe then followed with a double to left to give the visitors the 1-0 edge. Two batters later, Yermin Mercades belted a double off the wall in left to make it 2-0.
The Hillcats would draw even in the home half. Dillon Persinger and Conner Capel laced back-to-back doubles down the right field line to plate a run, and following a Capel steal, Jodd Carter reached on an infield single, bringing home Capel to tie the score at 2-2.
The Dash strung together three hits in a row to lead off the third, with Basabe coming through with a double to left to drive in a run. Adolfo followed with a sacrifice fly to right field to put the Dash back ahead, 4-2.
Tully exited in the fifth with a runner at second. He worked 4.1 innings, gave up ten hits, five earned runs, and struck out two. He extended his streak to 78 consecutive batters faced without allowing a walk.
Winston-Salem turned to Danny Dopico for the spot start, and he gave them a solid outing, striking out seven in four innings, allowing just two runs. Zach Thompson (Win, 1-1), picked up the victory in relief, tossing two innings out of the bullpen.
Luis Jimenez took over for Tully and allowed a walk to Basabe, before falling behind 3-0 to Adolfo. The power hitter got the green light and took advantage, blasting his fifth home run of the season, and second of the double-header, to extend Winston’s lead to 7-2.
The Hillcats got a run back in the sixth inning, as Jodd Carter reached on a one out walk and advanced to second on a passed ball. Logan Ice followed, and hit a sharp grounder off the first base bag that skipped down the right field line, to score Carter and make it 7-3.
The Dash continued to hit in the seventh, plating two more runs, highlighted by an Adolfo RBI double, and a run scoring single from Mercedes.
The series concludes on Thursday night, as the Hillcats play their first rubber game of the season, sending righty Justin Garza (2-0, 0.00) to the hill to face off with fellow right hander Luis Martinez (0-0, 2.92), in a 6:30 p.m. tilt.
It’s Thirsty Thursday at City Stadium, with drink specials, along with free admittance to all first responders and volunteers that helped in the tornado relief efforts. Former Major League player Brandon Inge will throw out the first pitch, and accept a donation from La Carreta of Timberlake Road on behalf of Brookville High School, which lost their baseball field as a result of the storm.
Max Gun and Matt Present will bring you the action beginning at 6:20 p.m. on TuneIn Radio and the Radio434 App.
For tickets or more information, visit lynchburg-hillcats.com, call 434-528-1144, or visit the City Stadium box office.