Bowling Green, Ky. - Granden Goetzman tripled twice and led the Bowling Green Hot Rods (Class-A/Tampa Bay Rays) rally that saw two runs cross in the ninth inning, including Goetzman who scored on a wild pitch for the walk-off win on Friday night. Goetzman tripled twice, and drove in two runs to help thwart the South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona Diamondbacks), who scored three runs in their half of the ninth to take a short-lived lead. The Hot Rods prevailed, 5-4.
The rally in the bottom of the ninth began with a single by Johnny Field. Goetzman followed with a liner into the left-center field gap, which scored Field from first base. Goetzman sprinted to third for the second of his two triples, and was just 90 feet from the walk-off win. South Bend brought in J.R. Bradley to pitch, and he subsequently threw a wild pitch. Goetzman sprinted home for the game-winning run.
Field and Goetzman teamed up in the first inning as well. Field led off the game for the Hot Rods with a triple, and was advanced home when Goetzman hit his first three-bagger. He would later score when Darryl George forced him home with a groundout to first base.
The Silver Hawks put their first run on the board in the fifth when Joe Munoz hit a solo home run to right field. The run was won back in the following half-inning by the Hot Rods courtesy of a Munoz throwing miscue that allowed Kean Wong to score.
For a time, it looked as if South Bend was going to steal the victory away. The lead remained 3-1 for the Hot Rods until the top of the ninth, when the Silver Hawks rallied to take the lead. Breland Almadova followed his Opening Night home run with a two-run double to tie the game at three, and South Bend would score the go-ahead run on a wild pitch.
Ian Kendall (1-0) stopped the South Bend rally in the ninth, and was rewarded with the win when the Hot Rods plated two in the ninth. He retired the only two batters he faced. Starter Jordan Harrison worked five innings and allowed just one run on two hits in the no-decision. Andrew Hanse tossed three scoreless innings in relief of Harrison.
Daniel Gibson (0-1) did not deliver the final wild pitch, but Goetzman was his responsibility in the ninth and he picked up the loss. He allowed two runs in his one and one-thirds inning.
The Hot Rods have started the season a perfect 2-0, and they'll look to make it three wins in a row Saturday night at Bowling Green Ballpark. Left-hander Chris Kirsch will take the mound for Bowling Green, and he'll be opposed by South Bend's Adam Miller. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m., and the first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a free magnet schedule, courtesy of HitCents Park Plaza.
Hot Rods Baseball - It's Just #Funner