The Doubledays (20-33) were unable to avoid the sweep in Mahoning Valley (25-29) on Saturday, dropping Game 3, 6-5, in extra innings.
Todd Peterson - in the process of being stretched into a starter after three years in the bullpen at Louisiana State - had his finest start yet as a Doubleday. The former LSU Tiger went five strong innings and allowed just three hits and no runs while facing the minimum his last three innings.
Auburn's bats gave Peterson plenty of run support as he dealt on the mound, starting with a five-pitch walk from J.T. Arruda in the second inning. Scrappers starter Carlos Vargas struck out the next two Doubledays, but a wild pitch advanced Arruda to second base. The extra 90-feet were huge, as Jake Alu - who finished the night 4-for-5 - brought him in with a single up the middle for a 1-0 lead.
Two straight singles and another wild pitch gave the Doubledays an additional opportunity to score in the fourth inning. Vargas' erraticness on the mound led to his third wild pitch of the night, which not only scored a run but placed a runner 90-feet from home. Alu followed it up with his second RBI of the game to give the Doubledays a comfortable 3-0 advantage.
Amos Willingham relieved Peterson in the sixth inning and retired the side in order, but ran into trouble in the seventh. Bryan Lavastida led off the inning with a single and, after Willingham recorded the next two outs, advanced to second on a wild pitch. Willingham left a pitch in the middle of the plate for Johnathan Rodriguez, who took it to deep center for an RBI triple.
A pair of doubles in the eighth inning tacked another run on the board for the Scrappers and a single tied the game at 3-3. Willingham was charged with another wild pitch but was able to limit the damage to just those two runs after getting Raynel Delgado to ground out to end the inning. The game went to extras after both sides went down in order in the ninth.
Doubledays manager Rocket Wheeler handed the ball to Bobby Milacki in the ninth inning and kept him in for the duration of the game. Milacki retired the side in order, then faced the minimum in the 10th after the Doubledays defense turned a double play to take the Scrappers' placed runner on second off the bases.
Milacki appeared to be lined up for his first win of the season after Auburn scored twice in the top of the 11th inning. A groundout moved Auburn's placed runner to third, and a failed play at the plate not only allowed the run to score, but also put Albert Carrillo on base. Carrillo ended up at third base following a walk and a fielder's choice, and was able to score on a passed ball.
The Scrappers, however, still had some fight in them. Brayan Rocchio worked a leadoff walk, and Mahoning Valley's placed runner came in to score on a throwing error by Milacki. Milacki intentionally walked the bases loaded and his defense was able to make a force out at home, but a throwing error from Carrillo sealed the deal and gave the Scrappers the 6-5 win.
The Doubledays will be back in action Sunday to start their series against the West Virginia Black Bears at 4:05 PM.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.