Auburn, NY - Led by Justin Miller’s go-ahead two-RBI triple in the bottom of the sixth, the Auburn Doubledays’ magic number dropped to three in a 4-2 handling of the Jamestown Jammers at Falcon Park on Thursday night.
Combined with Mahoning Valley’s 8-3 defeat of Williamsport, the Doubledays increased their Pinckney Division lead to two games. Auburn can clinch the division on Friday with a doubleheader sweep of Batavia and a Williamsport loss.
In a game that lasted over three hours, the Jammers struck first, putting the first three men on base in the first, including an RBI single by Brian McConkey off Taylor Hill. Jamestown took the early one run lead.
Auburn answered in the second, with Caleb Ramsey tying the game after doubling, advancing on a wild pitch, and scoring on a Bryce Ortega RBI groundout. The Doubledays put men on base in the second, third, and fourth, but failed to scroe, stranding a total of seven men in the first four innings combined.
Jamestown regained the lead in the top of the fifth without the benefit of a base hit. Auburn reliever Chad Jenkins loaded the bases on three walks, only to get pulled from the game in favor of Manuel Rivera, who walked the first batter he faced. Rivera ultimately got out of the inning, striking out Viosergy Rosa and getting Eddie Rodriguez to ground out to end the jam.
Just like the first, inning Auburn bounced back in the bottom half, tying the game. Matt Skole led off with a double and went to third on a base-hit by Justin Miller. The throw back into the infield by Jammers’ centerfielder Nestor Castillo was wild though, allowing Skole to score and Miller to advance to second. The Doubledays later loaded the bases with only one out, but Carlos Alvarez fouled out and Wilfri Pena struck out to end the inning.
Auburn took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth. With one out, Bryce Ortega and Matt Skole drew back-to-back walks, bringing Justin Miller to the plate. On the first pitch he saw, Miller drove a fly ball to deep centerfield, over the head of Nestor Castillo, scoring both Skole and Ortega to put the Doubledays up 4-2. Miller wound up at third base with his fifth double of the season.
From there, the Doubledays bullpen shut down the Jammers. Manuel Rivera tossed another inning of scoreless relief before turning it over to Christian Garcia, who put up zeroes in the eighth and ninth.
Despite going just 3 for 17 with men in scoring position and stranding 13 men on base, the Auburn Doubledays were victorious.
Auburn plays their final home games in the 2011 regular season on Friday, when they welcome the Batavia Muckdogs to Falcon Park for a doubleheader, starting at 5:05pm. Friday is ‘Fan Appreciation Night’ and fireworks will be shot off after the completion of game two, presented by SK Post 1324. For tickets, please visit www.auburndoubledays.com.