Unreal Urena Twice as Grand in Historic Game

Ponies switch hitter launches grand slam from each side

By Tim Heiman / Binghamton Rumble Ponies | August 27, 2018 11:03 PM

HARTFORD, CT - Rumble Ponies outfielder Jhoan Urena launched three home runs, including a pair of grand slams, in Binghamton's 12-2 win over the Hartford Yard Goats on Monday night at Dunkin Donuts Park. Urena drove in a franchise-record nine runs with the first three-homer game by a Binghamton player in more than a decade.

Urena started his big night in the first against Yard Goats starter Frank Duncan. After the righty hit a batter and walked two, Urena lifted a grand slam over the right-field wall. Urena, batting from the left side again in the third, crushed a solo homer to right, nearly hitting the ball out of the stadium.

The Rumble Ponies' outfielder etched his name into the team's history books in the sixth. Binghamton chased Duncan from the game with four straight hits, plating two runs. Reliever Brian Moran entered to record one out, but walked Patrick Mazeika to fill the bases for Urena. Batting right-handed, Urena ripped Moran's 0-2 pitch over the left-field wall. The blast gave Binghamton a twelve-run lead.

According to Baseball Reference, a player has hit two grand slams in a game only 13 times in the Major Leagues, an accomplishment rarer than a perfect game. Josh Willingham of the Washington Nationals was the last to achieve the feat on July 27, 2009. Bill Mueller is the only player to have hit grand slams from both sides of the plate, a feat Urena achieved on Monday night.

Urena became the first Binghamton player to hit three homers in a game since Daniel Murphy went deep three times against the Reading Phillies on May 26, 2008. Urena's monster night came just three days after he belted two homers on Friday in New Hampshire, his first career multiple-homer game.

He surpassed Jorga Toca for the franchise's single-game RBI record. Jorge Toca held the record previously with an eight-RBI game for the Binghamton Mets against the Reading Phillies on June 25, 1999.

Urena's herculean effort supported Binghamton starter Mickey Jannis, who shook off early trouble to collect the win. The knuckleballer slipped out of a bases-loaded jam unscathed in the first and stranded three more runners over his next two innings. The righty settled in with his last out of the third and retired 10 of the last 11 batters he faced.

Jannis (10-6) surrendered three hits over six scoreless innings to collect his 21st career victory with Binghamton. He moves into a tie for fourth in career wins with the organization.

The Rumble Ponies (62-71) continue their four-game series in Hartford on Tuesday at 7:05 PM. RHP Franklyn Kilome takes the mound for Binghamton. The Horizons Federal Credit Union pregame show starts at 6:50 PM and can be heard on NewsRadio 1290 AM WNBF and the Binghamton Rumble Ponies channel on TuneIn.

POSTGAME NOTES: Jhoan Urena is the second Eastern League hitter with three home runs in one game; Jake Rogers (Erie) hit three against Hartford on June 12…Binghamton snapped a seven-game losing streak at Dunkin Donuts Park…Urena has hit five homers in nine games at Dunkin Donuts Park

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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