Salisbury, MD - The Delmarva Shorebirds (19-20) scored four runs in the seventh inning to come from behind to defeat the Hickory Crawdads (21-19) 5-2 in front of 6,993 fans at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium on Friday night.
Hickory used the home run ball to build a first inning lead for a second straight night. Jorge Alfaro was hit by a pitch with two outs. Then, Ryan Rua hit a two-run homer to left field.
The Shorebirds inched within one in the second. Nik Balog was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Wynston Sawyer followed with a single to advance Balog to second. He reached third on a double play and scored on an error by second baseman Rua.
The Shorebirds broke through with four runs in the seventh inning against reliever Joe Burns. Anthony Vega singled to open the inning. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and Adrian Marin reached on an error by Burns. Anthony Caronia drew a walk to load the bases. Then, Lucas Herbst hit a line drive triple to the wall in right field, which scored all three runners. Joel Hutter followed with a double down the left field line to score Herbst and stretch the lead to 5-2.
Shorebirds starter Branden Kline struck out a career high 13 batters over 5.2 innings. The 13 strikeouts are the most by a Shorebirds pitcher since August 1, 2009 when Cole McCurry also struck out 13 batters. Kline gave up four hits and two runs, both in the first inning.
Jose Nivar earned his first win of the season over 2.1 innings. He allowed one hit and no runs.
Matt Price entered in the ninth inning and struck out the side to earn his sixth save of the season.
Herbst anchored the Shorebirds offense with a 3-for-5 game. He has recorded multiple hits in three straight games.
The Shorebirds and Crawdads play game three of the series on Saturday, May 18 at 7:05pm. LHP Josh Hader is the scheduled starter for Delmarva.