Squirrels score record 12 runs in inning in big win
The Flying Squirrels (56-76) scored a franchise-record 12 runs in the fifth inning, defeating the Akron RubberDucks (69-62) 13-3 on Saturday night at Canal Park. The 12-run inning eclipsed the previous franchise-best nine runs in a single inning, a feat the Squirrels had accomplished twice before. Every hitter contributed to the historic stanza and Richmond sent 17 men to the plate in the inning. The impressive inning arrived on the heels of a 1:11 rain delay.
Before the offensive barrage in the fifth, the two teams exchanged solo home runs in the first inning. Squirrels third baseman Christian Arroyo struck first with a solo shot over the left field wall. It was the third home run of the season for Arroyo and his first since May 23rdin Binghamton. Jordan Smith tied the game with his solo blast to right field off of Richmond’s Nestor Molina in the bottom half of the inning.
Lighting and rain interrupted the game with two outs in the third inning. The contest was delayed for 1:11 and resumed with both starting pitchers staying in the game. In the restart, the RubberDucks grabbed a brief 2-1 lead when Jeremy Lucas launched a solo home run to left field in the bottom of the fourth.
The short-lived 2-1 Akron lead was obliterated by Richmond with the historic 12-run top of the fifth. The Squirrels sent 17 men to the plate in the inning and received contributions for every hitter in the lineup. C.J Hinojosa opened the inning with a single and Steve Lerud started the scoring with a bases loaded base hit to right field. Darren Ford followed with an RBI triple, sending the starting pitcher D.J. Brown from the game. Brown was replaced by right-hander Grant Sides and Sides was also hit hard in the inning. Steven Duggar launched a double to greet Sides and Hunter Cole added an RBI single.
After Chris Shaw doubled, Hinojosa walked in his second at bat of the inning. Sides was then relieved by Colt Hynes, the third Akron pitcher in the inning. Hynes also scuffled and relinquished a three-run triple to Tyler Horan and a two-run single to Christian Arroyo. Hunter Cole finally grounded out to end the inning, causing the remaining crowd at the park to roar a derisive cheer. The Squirrels surpassed the previous record of nine runs in an inning, a feat they had accomplished twice, including nearly a year ago in Akron. The 12-run inning set the new team record and gave Richmond a 13-2 lead.
Virginia-native D.J. Brown (8-7) suffered the loss and pitched four plus innings in the outing. The JMU product allowed six runs (five earned) on four hits in the loss. Richmond’s Molina rolled through the bottom of the fifth inning and earned his second win in just his second start for Richmond. The veteran righty allowed two runs on six hits over five innings of work. Tyler Mizenko relieved Molina and allowed one run over two innings in the outing. Joe Nathan finished the game with a scoreless ninth.