The Renegades (18-13) withstood a ninth-inning rally from the IronBirds (11-20) to pick up the victory, keeping them close to the Brooklyn Cyclones atop the McNamara Division standings. The IronBirds got the potential tying run on base with one out in the ninth inning, but the hometown team managed to stop their rally before it could be completed.
The Renegades scored first in the bottom of the first inning. Center fielder Joey Rickard led off with a double to left field off Aberdeen starter David Richardson (1-2). The speedy Rickard moved up to third base on a fly out to right field, and came home when second baseman Tommy Coyle grounded out softly to the left side of the infield, making it 1-0 Renegades. The 'Gades tacked on another run in the bottom of the second inning. With one out, left fielder Marty Gantt popped a solo homer to left, his second of the year, and putting the Renegades up 2-0 early on.
The Renegades added one more score in the bottom of the fourth inning. With one out, shortstop Ryan Dunn singled to center field. With Gantt at the plate, a wild pitch moved Dunn up to second, and he moved up to third when Gantt hit a high bouncer back to Richardson for the second out. Richardson tossed another wild pitch that got by catcher Scott Kalush, and Dunn scampered home to make the score 3-0 Hudson Valley.
Hudson Valley put up a crooked number in the bottom of the fifth. Third baseman Leonardo Reginatto drew a walk to lead off and stole second, moving up to third on a single to right from Rickard. Rickard swiped second base, and designated hitter Justin O'Conner singled to right, bringing home Reginatto and sending Rickard to third. O'Conner advanced to second base on the throw to the infield, putting runners on second and third.
Aberdeen reliever Jose Nivar came on with two outs to try to end the threat, but ended up making things worse. Nivar bounced a pitch in front of home plate that got away from catcher Scott Kalush. Kalush got to the ball in time to throw to Nivar covering the plate and to send Rickard back to third, but O'Connor was hung up between second and third. Nivar fired wildly to second, and the throw sailed into center, allowing Rickard to score and make the lead 5-0.
The IronBirds finally got on the board in the top of the seventh. Creede Simpson singled up the middle to lead off the frame, but two consecutive fly outs left it looking grim for Aberdeen. With two outs, Tom Winegardner lined a ball to the right field corner for an RBI triple that trimmed the lead to 5-1.
In the top of the ninth, Aberdeen made the home fans sweat. With new reliever Ryan Garton on for the Renegades, Lucas Herbst drew a leadoff walk, and moved up to second on a balk. Following a strikeout from pinch-hitter Anthony Vega, Winegardner singled Herbst to third base. Roderick Bernadina drew a base on balls to load the bases with one out for Torsten Boss. Garton dealt a wild pitch that moved up the runners and scored Herbst. Boss came through with a line drive single to center that scored Winegardner and Bernadina, and cut the lead to 5-4.
Marcus Jensen came on from the bullpen, and had a tough situation, with the potential tying run at first and potential winning run at the plate. He dealt to Christian Walker, who had previously reached base in all his at-bats. After falling behind 3-1 in the count, Jensen battled back to fan Walker on a foul tip. The Renegades reliever then slammed the door, whiffing Joel Hutter to end the game.
Hudson Valley starter Sean Bierman (2-1) earned the win on five shutout innings, allowing four hits and fanning four. Ian Kendall gave up a run on four hits and two walks over three innings pitched; he struck out three. Garton gave up three runs on two hits and two walks; he struck out one for his only out recorded. Jensen earned his fourth save, striking out the only two batters he faced.
Richardson took the loss, allowing five runs (four earned) on five hits and two walks across 4.2 innings of work; he struck out four. Nivar tossed 3.1 innings of relief, giving up one hit and two walks while striking out one. The reliever didn't allow any runs, but an inherited runner did score.
The Renegades and IronBirds tangle again Friday night at Dutchess Stadium for Be Your Own Fan Friday, with postgame fireworks presented by St. Luke's Hospital. Righty Taylor Guerrieri toes the rubber for the Renegades, with righty Mark Blackmar on the hill for Aberdeen. First pitch is at 7:05, with Ben Gellman's pregame show starting at 6:50 p.m. on 1450 and 1370 AM WKIP, as well as online at HVRenegades.com.