AUBURN, NY -- The Auburn Doubledays, Short Season Class A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, defeated the Connecticut Tigers, Short Season Class A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, 7-4 on Tuesday night. Auburn raced out to a 7-0 lead before hanging on in the late innings.
Auburn (19-27) was spurred on early by a sterling start from Seth Romero. The Washington Nationals' first round pick this season pitched three hitless innings, striking out five Connecticut (21-23) batters while surrendering just one walk. The Doubledays' bats took it from there, scoring single runs in the first and second inning. Matt Skole's solo home run in the bottom of the first made it 1-0, while Nic Perkins' RBI groundout in the second drove home Kameron Esthay and made it 2-0. Auburn has scored first in three straight games.
The Doubledays tacked on another run in the fourth on an RBI double from Esthay before the real fireworks began in the fifth. Five straight hits to start the bottom of the fifth produced four Auburn runs, including RBI hits from Carter Kieboom, Jake Scudder, and Branden Boggetto. Yonathan Ramirez backed the offense up with three scoreless innings of relief in the place of Seth Romero. The lefty allowed just one hit and one walk while recording one strikeout.
Things began to get dicey for Auburn in the seventh when Connecticut erased the shutout on a Hector Martinez RBI single. Two more runs followed in the eighth, and the ninth nearly turned into a nightmare. Jared Johnson surrendered one run in the frame but had the bases empty with two outs before Ro Coleman tripled and Will Savage walked to bring the potential tying run to the plate. Luke Burch strode in, but Johnson bore down and struck Burch out looking to end the game. The Tigers recorded seven strikeouts as a team on the evening.
Yonathan Ramirez earned the win, improving to 3-3 on the season. Ryan Castellanos started and took the loss for Connecticut, allowing 10 hits and six earned runs in four innings of work. Auburn goes for the series win tomorrow night at 7:05. Kyle Johnston starts for the Doubledays, while the Tigers counter with Brad Bass.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.