AKRON, OH - Akron Aeros starting pitcher Matt Packer delivered six solid innings and the Aeros' offense caught fire after a slow start to lead Akron to an 11-2 win over the New Hampshire Fisher Cats on Wednesday night at Canal Park.
Packer's night got off to a slow start, but just like his season, he battled through it and picked up his third win of the season. The third inning looked to be a big inning for the Fisher Cats, who started the frame with four consecutive singles to go up 1-0 and leaving the bases loaded with no outs. Packer fought his way out of the jam by retiring the next three hitters to escape major damage. The only other run off Packer came on a fourth-inning solo homer by outfielder Brad Glenn, which made it 2-0 Fisher Cats.
While Packer was battling on the mound, the Aeros bats were struggling at the plate with just one infield hit off New Hampshire starter Marcus Walden through three innings.
Things picked up in the fourth inning when Giovanny Urshela singled, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on a Justin Toole single to center to make it 2-1. The Aeros tied it in the fifth when Ronny Rodriguez led off the inning with a double and later scored on a Jesus Aguilar fielder's choice.
Akron took the lead for good in the sixth when Urshela laced a double to left to start the inning and scored on a Rodriguez sacrifice fly, making it 3-2 Akron.
That's when the Aeros offense kicked it into high gear.
After a strong 1-2-3 top of the seventh from new Akron reliever Chen-Chang Lee that included a pair of strikeouts, the offense put four runs on the board to make the score 7-2 with the big hit coming on Carlos Moncrief's three-run blast to right field, his seventh of the season. Jose Ramirez singled in Urshela for the fourth run of the inning. Moncrief finished 3-for-4 with a home run, three runs batted in, a walk and a stolen base.
If that wasn't enough offense, for good measure the Aeros put up another four-spot in the eighth inning to make it 11-2. This time the big hit was a two-run home run from Urshela, who finished the day 4-for-5 with four runs scored, two doubles, a home run and two runs batted in.
Reliever Enosil Tejeda threw two perfect innings of relief that included a pair of strikeouts to close the door on the Fisher Cats.
The Aeros continue a six-game homestand at Canal Park on Thursday night at 7:05, against New Hampshire in the final game of the three-game series. RHP Deck McGuire (3-5, 5.40) will get the ball for New Hampshire, while RHP Toru Murata (2-3, 4.02) is the scheduled starter for Akron. The game will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1350 AM, and online at www.sportsradio1350.com. For more information, please call the Aeros at 330-253-5151. Follow the team on Twitter @akronaeros or on Facebook at facebook.com/theakronaeros.