Ninth-inning homer lifts Flying Squirrels to wild 10-9 win
Trailing by a run with two outs in the top of the ninth inning, Frankie Tostado blasted a two-run homer to give the Richmond Flying Squirrels the lead in a back-and-forth 10-9 win over the Hartford Yard Goats on Friday night at Dunkin Donuts Park.
The Flying Squirrels (25-21) opened a 7-0 lead in the second inning before the Yard Goats (14-32) rallied to take 9-8 lead in the seventh.
Tostado finished the game 4-for-5 with two homers, a double, three runs scored and five RBIs, the most runs driven in by a Flying Squirrels player in a single game this season. He now leads the team with 27 RBIs this season.
In the first, Sandro Fabian opened the scoring with a two-run single. Andres Angulo and Shane Matheny added two more RBI hits on the inning to put Richmond ahead, 4-0.
Fabian singled in another run in the top of the second inning and Tostado picked up a two-run double to open the Richmond lead to 7-0 against Hartford starter Karl Koffmann.
The Yard Goats broke into the scoring in the bottom of the second with a two-run homer by Willie Abreu and Sean Bouchard added a solo homer in the third to close the gap to 7-3. Abreu hit an RBI single in the fourth to pull Hartford within three runs.
In the top of the fifth, Tostado hit a solo homer to left, his first of two home runs on the night, to push Richmond’s lead to 8-4.
The Yard Goats scored four runs in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game. Abreu hit picked up his fourth RBI of the night with a single and Javier Guevara brought in a second run with a single to pull the Yard Goats within two.
The next batter, Matt McLaughlin, popped out to Matheny at second, who threw to home plate in an attempt to hold the runner at third base. After the play, Richmond catcher Andres Angulo picked up the baseball with his helmet, and home plate umpire Ben Rosen ruled catcher’s interference, bringing Elehuris Montero in to score from third.
Reliever Jose Marte entered the game for Richmond and threw a wild pitch that brought Guevara in to score from third, tying the score, 8-8.
In the bottom of the seventh, Hartford claimed its first lead of the game with an RBI, ground-rule double by Coco Montes.
Jose Marciano (Win, 1-0) entered in the bottom of the eighth and worked around a lead-off single with a double play and a strikeout to hold the score tied.
David Villar reached with a lead-off walk in the ninth against Hartford reliever Yoan Aybar (Loss, 1-4). After a pair of flyouts, Tostado drove his second home run of the night to give Richmond a 10-9 lead.
After Marciano picked up the first out of the bottom of the ninth with a strikeout, R.J. Dabovich (Save, 1) worked a flyout and a strikeout to end the game.
Simon Whiteman picked up three hits, all singles, and scored a run. Fabian finished the night 2-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
The Flying Squirrels and Yard Goats play the fifth of the six-game series on Saturday night at Dunkin Donuts Park. Left-hander Michael Plassmeyer (0-2, 8.38) will start for Richmond opposed by Hartford right-hander Garrett Schilling (1-4, 4.81). First pitch is scheduled for 6:05 p.m.
The Flying Squirrels are back at The Diamond for a six-game series against the Binghamton Rumble Ponies from June 29-July 4. On June 29, the Flying Squirrels honor the 35th anniversary of the Richmond Braves winning the 1986 International League title with the Governor’s Cup Celebration at The Diamond. Charlie Puleo and Brad Komminsk of the 1986 R-Braves will throw ceremonial first pitches. The first 1,000 fans 15 and older can receive a t-shirt featuring the classic logo for The Diamond presented by Ukrop’s Homestyle Foods. Gates open at 5:30 with a 6:35 p.m. first pitch.
Tickets are available online at SquirrelsBaseball.com/Tickets, by phone at 804-359-3866 or in person at the Flying Squirrels offices.