|© MLB Advanced Media, L.P. All rights reserved.|
Greene pitches Thunder into Finals09/06/2013 11:45 PM ET
By Robert Emrich / MiLB.com
Shane Greene went into Friday night's game, knowing his team would win. Then he went out and made sure.
The Yankees prospect gave up five hits and struck out five over 5 2/3 innings as Double-A Trenton blanked Binghamton, 3-0, to complete a sweep of their best-of-5 Eastern League semifinal series.
Greene (1-0) threw 61 of 103 pitches for strikes, walked four and recorded 10 ground-ball outs.
"I just went out there with the same game plan as I had all year -- make them hit my pitches," he said. "I throw basically all sinkers. Today, I was down in the zone. Like I said before, I was making them hit my pitches."
After rallying for an improbable 6-5 win in Game 1, the Thunder limited the B-Mets to one run over the final 18 innings of the series to return to the Finals. They're looking for their first title since 2008 after falling to Akron in four games in last year's Championship Series.
"We're pretty excited," Greene said. "Lots of energy in the clubhouse to go out there and win a ring. Now we get a couple of off days and let the bodies rest a little bit."
Friday's game was scoreless until the fifth, when Yankees outfielder Zoilo Almonte -- rehabbing with the Thunder -- delivered an RBI single. Ramon Flores, who'd walked, came home on a throwing error by shortstop Wilfredo Tovar to make it 2-0.
"I was pretty excited," Greene said. "I kind of black out there when I'm pitching most of the time, so I don't show a whole lot of emotion. But deep down I knew it was my game to win or lose and put that on my shoulder."
"I put a lot of pressure on myself regardless of the situation. I'm my biggest critic. We have a good team, I went into the game knowing we were going to win. I think taking that confidence onto the mound is huge."
Pat Venditte took over for the 24-year-old right-hander in the sixth and struck out Darrell Ceciliani to leave the bases loaded. Danny Burawa franned three and gave up two hits over the final 1 1/3 innings to his first postseason save.
Trenton awaits the winner of the other semifinal between Harrisburg and Erie.
In other action:
Harrisburg 4, Erie 1
Nationals No. 5 prospect Nathan Karns struck out eight and gave up five hits over seven shutout innings as the Senators took a 2-1 lead in the best-of-5 series. Jason Martinson slugged a solo homer and Brian Goodwin -- Washington's top-ranked prospect -- was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Game 4 is Saturday in Harrisburg. Gameday box score »