GREENSBORO, NC - The Greensboro Grasshoppers vaulted an improbable comeback Friday night as they came back from an early 6-1 deficit to defeat the West Virginia Power 8-6.
Facing a four-run deficit entering the bottom of the 8th inning, the Grasshoppers promptly responded with five consecutive base hits including outfielder Justin Bass' game tying three-run home run.
Following the Bass home run, outfielder Rand Smith singled and first baseman Ryan Keedy drew a walk to keep the rally alive. This allowed second baseman Chris Wade to advance both the runners into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt.
With the go-ahead run standing only 90 feet away at third base, shortstop Jose Torres hit a sharply hit ball to the West Virginia first baseman; who then proceeded to make an errant throw home allowing Rand Smith to cross the plate and give the Hoppers the lead. The Hoppers were able to tack on one more run after that to make the score 8-6.
Greensboro pitcher A.J. Ramos came on in the 9th inning to pick up the save as he shut the door on the Power with a 1-2-3 inning.
Picking up the win for the Grasshoppers was relief pitcher Ramon Benjamin (2-1). Benjamin, who came on in the 8th inning in relief of pitchers Curtis Petersen and Natividad Dilone, was just sent back to Greensboro earlier this week after a brief call-up to Jupiter.
The Grasshoppers have opened the second half of the season now with the two consecutive victories against the Power, as they look to remain in the hunt for the South Atlantic League's second half Northern Division Crown.
These two teams will square off again tomorrow at NewBridge Bank Park as LHP Chad James (1-4, 4.50) takes the mound for the Hoppers against West Virginia's LHP Nathan Baker (4-4, 3.61). First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 PM.