BOWIE, Md. - Cristian Alvarado struck out Henri Lartigue with the bases loaded in the ninth inning to seal a 6-5 win for the Bowie Baysox over the Reading FIghtin' Phils in front of 2,648 at Prince George's Stadium Tuesday night.
Darick Hall lined a RBI double in the first inning to give Reading (24-18) a 1-0 lead, but Bowie responded and tied the game with a run in the bottom of the second inning. A pair of singles placed runners on the corners with one out. Jesse Valentin took off to steal second base and reached safely, but the Lartigue throw sailed into center field to allow Yusniel Diaz to cross the plate.
Bowie (29-10) took their first lead of the game with a run in the third inning. Ryan Ripken lined a leadoff double to dead center field for the first extra-base hit of the series for the hosts. A Mason McCoy infield single advanced the designated hitter to third base, and he scored one batter later on a Cedric Mullins sacrifice fly to deep left-center field.
The Phils fought back with two runs in the fifth inning to regain the lead, but Yusniel Diaz tied the game to start a four-run sixth inning en route to a 6-3 lead. The first pitch from starter Jose Taveres landed in the left-center gap for the 15th double for Diaz since returning from the Injured List on June 5. Cedric Mullins, who led off with a walk and stole second base, easily scored from third base to tie the game at 3-3.
The four-run frame continued three batters later, when Ryan McKenna flared a broken-bat single to shallow center field to score Diaz on his first hit since July 22. A Rylan Bannon walk loaded the bases for Ripken, who used a Baltimore chop through the vacated shortstop hole to plate Valentin and McKenna.
Reading chipped away with single runs in the seventh and eighth innings, but that was all the offense allowed by relievers Francisco Jimenez (win) and Luis Gonzalez in place of starter Zac Lowther. Pitching for the second night in a row, Alvarado earned his fourth save of the season by striking out Gomez and then Lartigue to seal a series win.
The Maryland finale between the Baysox and Fightin' Phils gets underway at 7:05 p.m., when LHP Alex Wells (8-2, 2.17 ERA) looks to bounce back against a Reading pitcher to be named later. Wednesday is another Military Appreciation Night, in which all military members (active and retired) get a half-price box seat ticket when they show proof of service at the box office.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.