Around the minors 8.28.10


SCRANTON/WILKES-BARRE 2, BUFFALO 1: The Buffalo Bisons and Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees split a crucial doubleheader at PNC Field. The Bisons nonetheless gained ground in the wild-card race with Columbus losing its game, 8-0 against Indianapolis. Buffalo is 1½ games behind the Clippers with 10 games remaining. In the first game of the doubleheader, Kei Igawa and Dillon Gee were in a pitchers’ duel. Igawa faced the minimum 12 batters through the first four innings. Gee threw 5 2/3 scoreless innings and tied a season high with 11 strikeouts to bring his season total to 161. The Bisons jumped on Igawa in the seventh. The Herd started off the frame getting three hits, including a two-run double from Russ Adams. Buffalo added a two-run homer from Mike Cervenak, his seventh long ball of the year, to go up 4-0. They would hold on to win by that final in the first game. The Yankees left 12 men on base in just seven innings in the opener and went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position. In Game 2, the Bisons once again were in a low-scoring affair. The Yankees took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on a home run from Jorge Vazquez, his 15th. The lead would hold up until the sixth inning when the Bisons struck back. After Royce Ring got the first two outs of the frame, the Yankees brought in their star closer, Jonathan Albaladejo. He already broke the International League record for saves earlier this year and has 42 total saves on the season. Albaladejo is also eight saves shy of establishing a new minor league record for saves in a year. However, this would not be his night and he would blow just his second save of the season. With the bases empty and two away in the inning, Valentino Pascucci hammered a fastball over the left-field wall for his 16th homer to even the score at 1. Albaladejo later was ejected for confronting the plate umpire over a call. But the Yankees got that run right back in the top of the seventh. Speedy Greg Golson led off the frame with a double down the third-base line. Two batters later it was Vazquez again providing the go-ahead run, this time with a bloop base hit into right field off Jose De La Torre to easily score Golson and help the Yankees retake the lead 2-1. The Bisons and Yankees will play the rubber match and the final game on top of Montage Mountain in 2010 on Sunday, with a 5:05 p.m. start time from PNC Field. With a hit in both games, Cervenak extended his hitting streak to 10 games. In his first games back with Buffalo since being sent down from the big leagues, Jesus Feliciano went 3-for-6 in the two games. Boxscores Game 1 Game 2


READING 5, BINGHAMTON 4 (9 INNINGS): The B-Mets split a doubleheader with Reading at First Energy Stadium, winning Game 1 before falling in walk-off fashion in Game 2. Edgar Ramirez tied a career-high with five scoreless innings as the spot starter in the nightcap and struck out a career-high seven, but did not factor in the decision. Binghamton (63-69) and the R-Phils battled to a scoreless deadlock through four innings in the opener as Eddie Kunz and Yohan Flande threw up matching zeroes. However, the B-Mets would crack the scoreboard in the fifth. Brahiam Maldonado and Luke Montz led off the inning with singles off Flande. Kunz followed and dropped a sacrifice bunt in front of the mound. The southpaw picked up the bunt and fired errantly down the right-field line, allowing Maldonado to score and Kunz and Montz to reach scoring position. Jose Coronado drove in both B-Mets with a double to the wall in right-center, upping the lead to 3-0. Reading (65-67) answered in the fifth to keep the game close. Kunz, who had faced one over the minimum until the fifth, gave up a leadoff infield single to Kevin Mahar. Cody Overbeck followed and centered a first-pitch fastball from the Binghamton starter, sending it over the wall in left for his 12th homer to trim the B-Mets’ lead to 3-2. Montz provided an insurance run in the next half-inning, which proved to be the difference. Eric Campbell sliced a single through the right side of the infield off Flande with one out. After Maldonado was called out on strikes, Montz lined a double into the left-field corner, plating Campbell all the way from first to increase the lead to 4-2. Manuel Alvarez entered for Kunz to start the last of the sixth. Alvarez got off to a shaky start, though, as Harold Garcia lofted a home run to left to lead off the frame. However, Alvarez retired the next six batters in succession to nail down his sixth save. Kunz was credited with his seventh win. He limited the R-Phils to a pair of runs on four hits and struck out two, while failing to walk a hitter. The nightcap also featured an outstanding start for a B-Mets reliever. Ramirez kept Reading in check to allow his hitters to grab the lead. Jon Malo drew a walk from Tyson Brummett with one out in the third. After Ramirez struck out, Coronado plated Malo with a double into the right-field corner, vaulting Binghamton into the lead, 1-0. Binghamton was back at it in the fourth. Sean Ratliff and Marshall Hubbard ripped singles to start the inning, putting runners at the corners. Brummett exited the game due to injury after throwing one pitch to Maldonado. Chris Kissock entered and promptly gave up a sacrifice fly to right, plating Ratliff and upping the B-Mets’ advantage to 2-0. Ramirez exited on the winning end after five innings, but the bullpen could not hold it. Roy Merritt replaced the starter. Timo Perez led off the sixth and reached on a fielding error by Hubbard at first, which allowed Perez to reach second. That proved to be omen for events to follow. Michael Spidale drove home Perez with a triple to right, getting the Phillies onto the board, 2-1. Tagg Bozied was next to hit and gave Reading its first lead of the night with a towering two-run home run to left off a hanging breaking ball from Merritt, pushing the R-Phils ahead 3-2. The lefty, who failed to get an out, exited after walking John Suomi on four pitches. Erik Turgeon entered and allowed the next two to reach before giving up a sacrifice fly to Kevin Nelson, upping the Reading advantage to 4-2. Salomon Manriquez kept the B-Mets’ hopes to win alive in the seventh. Jason DeFratus entered in search of his sixth save, but was disappointed by Binghamton. Raul Reyes singled to right to start the rally. Manriquez followed and smashed his first home run of the year, tying the score at 4. The two teams traded scoreless frames until the ninth when the Philies would win it. Righty Elvin Ramirez, who was making his Double-A debut, walked a pair of hitters in the frame to put runners at first and second with two outs. Garcia struck the decisive blow with a single to left-center, scoring Overbeck with the winning run. Sergio Escalona earned the win with two scoreless relief innings for the R-Phils in the nightcap. He had five strikeouts. Coronado went a combined 3-for-7 for the B-Mets with a pair of doubles and three RBIs to lead the way. Boxscores Game 1 Game 2

FORT MYERS 7, ST. LUCIE 6: Boxscore

SAVANNAH 3, CHARLESTON 2: The Savannah Sand Gnats won their third straight game over the Charleston RiverDogs in a suspense-filled game. Reliever Brandon Sage got out of a bases-loaded one-out jam in the eighth inning to protect a strong effort from starter Armando Rodriguez. Rodriguez retired the first 11 RiverDogs he faced while fanning nine over five innings to earn his seventh win. The Gnats (27-34/69-62) took advantage of their opportunities, scoring all three of their runs in the third inning, highlighted by a two-run single by the hot-hitting Jordan Abruzzo. As it turned out, Savannah would need all those runs. Charleston scored a run in the seventh on a mammoth home run to deep center field by Luke Murton and tallied another run in the eighth, as the RiverDogs loaded the bases with one out. With one run already scoring in the inning, Sage was summoned from the Savannah bullpen to extinguish the RiverDog rally. The lefty wasted no time, striking out Neil Medchill before forcing Francisco Santana to pop out to shortstop Robbie Shields. In the ninth, the drama intensified as Kevin Mahony led off with a single. After retiring shortstop Kelvin Castro on a groundout to first, the stage was set for the play of the day. Charleston's Slade Heathcott laced what appeared to be a certain base hit to right field. Cody Holliday raced in and snared the shot just above the Grayson Stadium turf. Mahony, thinking as did the Charleston bench that Holiday had trapped the baseball, headed for second. Holliday stood and threw behind the runner to double off Mahony, ending the game. Boxscore


BROOKLYN 10, CONNECTICUT 0: The Brooklyn Cyclones (44-21) clinched the 2010 McNamara Division title with a dominating win over the Connecticut Tigers (33-34) and a loss by Hudson Valley. The division title is Brooklyn's fifth in 10 seasons, and the first since 2007. Yohan Almonte (8-4) tossed a shutout, allowing six hits while striking out five Tigers and not issuing a walk. The performance lowers his ERA to 2.00. The Brooklyn bats unloaded for 10 runs on 15 hits, including home runs by Blake Forsythe and Jeff Flagg. Six Cyclones notched multi-hit games -- Forsythe, Flagg, Darrell Ceciliani, Cory Vaughn, James Schroeder and Justin Schafer. Schafer went 3-for-5. Ceciliani drove in three runs. Vaughn tied a franchise single-season record with his 46th RBI. Flagg's home run gave him 45 RBIs. Brooklyn now sets its sights on locking up home-field advantage throughout the postseason, and possibly setting a new best single-season club record (52-24 is the all-time best mark, set by the 2001 team). Boxscore

Compiled from team reports