Allentown, Pa. - Consistent rain could not keep the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Triple-A/Philadelphia Phillies) from scoring late, as they overcame a 2-0 deficit to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (New York Yankees) to win on Thursday night, 4-2. It was the first of 16 matchups between the two squads, who are vying for the IronRail Trophy.
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre scored both of their runs in the top of the fourth inning. Ronnier Mustelier led off by drawing a walk off of Carlos Zambrano. Dan Johnson followed with a double to move Mustelier to third. That setup Josh Bell's sacrifice fly to center field that plated Mustelier. Following a walk to J.R. Murphy, who was promoted to SWB from Double-A Trenton prior to the game, and a single by Addison Maruszak, the bases were loaded. One out later, Alberto Gonzalez drew a two-out walk to force home Johnson, and it gave the RailRiders the 2-0 lead.
The IronPigs cut into that lead in the bottom of the fourth. Darin Ruf led off with a walk, moved to second when Cody Overbeck was hit by a pitch, then to third on a sacrifice bunt. He then scored after Steve Susdorf grounded out to short.
Overbeck tied the game in the sixth when he homered to right field. His lead-off round tripper was his 12th of the season, which paces Lehigh Valley.
The game did not remain tied for long, as Lehigh Valley plated two in the seventh to gain the advantage. Ruf hit a solo home run with one out, his sixth of the season, to put the IronPigs in front. They added another run in the inning, when Cameron Rupp singled home Leandro Castro.
Zambrano earned a no-decision in his first start above the Double-A level this season. He worked five innings, allowed two earned runs, and issued four walks. Justin Friend (4-1) earned the win after tossing one and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief. Cesar Jimenez retired the side in order in the ninth to pick-up his first save of the year.
Brett Marshall started for SWB, and went five and one-third innings. He allowed just two runs, but walked a season-high six batters. He also struck out four, and scattered five hits. Jim Miller (0-5) took the loss in relief.
The RailRiders and IronPigs will play game two of their four-game series Friday evening. Chris Bootcheck (5-2, 3.32) will get the starting nod for SWB, while Lehigh Valley will counter with Ethan Martin (5-3, 5.64). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.; pregame coverage will get underway at 6:35 p.m. on NEPA Sports Radio - The GAME, Northeast PA's largest sports radio network: 100.7 FM, 1340 WYCK-AM, 1400 WICK-AM, 1440 WCDL-AM and 106.7 FM.
- SWB RailRiders - All Aboard! -