Richmond Braves return for one night, lose
The Richmond Flying Squirrels (58-41), playing as the Richmond Braves on Turn-Back-the-Clock Weekend, fell in 11 innings, 4-3, to the Harrisburg Senators (39-59) at The Diamond on Friday night. Jason Martinson provided the game-winning home run for the Senators in the top of the 11th inning.
The Squirrels grabbed the lead first in the third inning against right-hander John Simms. Ryan Lollis started the inning with a single and an out later was forced by Kelby Tomlinson. Tomlinson stole second base – establishing a new single-season franchise-record with his 38th(Ford – 2010). Matt Duffy then singled to right field to bring in Tomlinson for a 1-0 lead.
Lefty Kelvin Marte retired the first nine Senators in order, but Michael Taylor answered for Harrisburg when he led off the fourth. He cracked a solo-home run to left field to level the ledger, 1-1. It marked Taylor’s 19th of the season.
Harrisburg forged ahead in the fifth. Drew Vettleson sparked the inning with a one-out double to left-center field. An out later, Adrian Sanchez put the Senators ahead, 2-1, with a single into center field.
Marte allowed the first three batters of the sixth inning to reach before being lifted. Ricky Hague doubled to start the inning before Matt Skole singled to put runners at the corners. Marte walked Kevin Keyes to load the bases before removed. Right-hander Jose Casilla entered and was able to escape the inning allowing only one to score on a bunt-single from Vettleson.
Neither starter factored in the decision. Marte was charged with three earned runs on six hits over five innings plus three batters. Simms allowed just a lone run on six hits over 5 1/3 innings.
Richmond came back against the Senators bullpen in the seventh inning. Tomlinson drew a walk from lefty Chris Manno with one out. Duffy followed with a double to put the tying runs in scoring position. Tomlinson scored on a wild-pitch and Mario Lisson brought home Duffy with a sacrifice-fly to knot the ballgame, 3-3.
Martinson’s game-winning home run to right field was the first hit the Senators had produced since the sixth inning. It was Martinson’s sixth of the year and came off of right-hander Cody Hall. Hall (1-4) took the loss for Richmond.
Robert Benincasa (1-3) earned the win in relief for Harrisburg. He worked two scoreless innings of relief for his first victory of the season. Right-hander Colin Bates retired the side in order in the 11th to earn his second save of the season.
Game three of the four-game series is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at The Diamond on Saturday night. Richmond RHP Kyle Crick (6-4, 3.23) will make the start against Harrisburg LHP Zach Kroenke (2-3, 5.91). The Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup begins at 6:35 p.m. on Sports Radio 910 and SportsRadio910.com.