Squirrels dig long ball, power past Baysox

richmond flying squirrelsJacob Heyward, Brock Stassi and Chris Shaw combined to hit four home runs to tie a single-game franchise record and lead the Richmond Flying Squirrels to a 7-3 win over the Bowie Baysox on Wednesday at Prince George’s Stadium.

Richmond (10-13) took the lead on the very first pitch of the game when Heyward crushed a home run off of Bowie (6-20) right-hander Hunter Harvey (Loss, 0-2). Heyward’s blast was the second leadoff homer in as many days for the Flying Squirrels and extended Richmond’s home run streak to five consecutive games.

The Baysox brought home a run in the bottom of the first against left-hander Garrett Williams (Win, 1-2). With the bases loaded and one out, T.J. Nichting scored on a groundout by Ademar Rifaela to even the score.

Jesmuel Valentin hit a solo home run in the second inning to put Bowie in front, 2-1.

The Flying Squirrels retook the lead and broke the ballgame open in the third, sending nine men to the plate and scoring five runs on four hits. After Johneshwy Fargas singled to start the frame, Heyward and Stassi hit back-to-back homers to put Richmond in front, 4-2. Next, after two walks and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases, Levi Michael singled to bring in the last two runs of the inning.

Heyward, who was activated from the 7-day injured list on Wednesday, went 3-for-5 with two home runs and three RBIs in his first game since April 22.

After allowing runs in each of his first two innings, Williams finished his season-high, six-inning start with four scoreless frames. The left-hander tied a season high with six strikeouts, allowing two runs on five hits without issuing a walk.

Shaw hit a home run for the second consecutive game, clobbering a solo shot to right-center field in the seventh to extend Richmond’s lead to five. Shaw’s home run was the fourth of the game for the Flying Squirrels, marking the seventh four-homer game in franchise history and the first since May 21, 2016 vs. Erie.

The Flying Squirrels have hit 12 home runs over the last five games and 21 total home runs this season.

The Baysox brought the tying run to the plate in the eighth inning. After right-hander Rodolfo Martinez loaded the bases on two singles and a walk, right-hander Melvin Adon (Save, 2) entered and walked Martin Cervenka to force in a run. Adon then stranded the bases loaded, striking out Preston Palmeiro and inducing an inning-ending pop out from Valentin to end Bowie’s threat.

The Flying Squirrels return to The Diamond on Thursday begin a seven-game homestand, beginning with a four-game series against the Altoona Curve. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m., with right-hander Brandon Lawson (0-1, 4.91 ERA) facing Altoona right-hander Pedro Vasquez (1-0, 2.86 ERA). Coverage begins with the Flying Squirrels Pregame Warmup presented by Air Force Reserve at 6:05.

As part of the 10 memorable past promotions series, fans in attendance on Thursday can enter to win a gently-used car. The winner will be announced on the field postgame before In-Your-Face Fireworks.

Tickets are on sale now for the 2019 Eastern League All-Star Week presented by Genworth. The All-Star Week festivities begin on Sunday, July 7 with Mayor Levar Stoney’s All-Star Week Kickoff on Brown’s Island, followed by the All-Star Country Music Jam on Monday, July 8, headlined by Big & Rich with special guests Cowboy Troy and DJ Sinister at Virginia Credit Union LIVE! at Richmond Raceway. The Celebrity Home Run Derby is Tuesday, July 9 and the festivities wrap up with the 2019 Eastern League All-Star Game on Wednesday, July 10.

For tickets or more information, call 804-359-3866 (FUNN), visit SquirrelsBaseball.com/Tickets or stop by the Flying Squirrels box office.

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