Once New Hampshire's offense got going Wednesday, it didn't slow down.
Behind the ninth-ranked Blue Jays prospect Cavan Biggio, the Double-A Fisher Cats bats toppled the Thunder, 8-0, in the first game of their Eastern League semifinal at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
Gameday box score
New Hampshire broke out in the sixth, highlighted by the double Biggio smacked to right field on a fastball that drove in Blue Jays No. 2 prospect Bo Bichette and Harold Ramirez. Five consecutive batters reached base in the three-run frame.
"I got up to the plate with runners on second and third with nobody out, and you're trying to get the ball in the air with the infield in," said Biggio. "Coming off my last at-bat where they pitched me pretty well and struck me out, I was trying to see the ball a little bit deeper and drive it to the middle of the field. They missed the pitch a bit on the inside, it went over the middle of the plate and I drove it up the middle."
In the eighth, the Fisher Cats piled on five more runs, including a two-RBI single by leadoff man Jon Berti.
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The first four New Hampshire batters -- Berti, Bichette, Ramirez and Biggio -- have been mainstays in the order for the second half of the season despite promotions.
"We've had a good year from the beginning until the end with our lineup," said the son of seven-time National League All-Star Craig Biggio. "Whether we got guys like [Vladimir Guerrero Jr.] in the lineup or not, we've been able to fill in the holes with what we have. It goes to show with the core group of guys that we've had here for the whole year, we've been able to click with each other."
After hitting .252 with 26 home runs and 99 RBIs en route to garnering Eastern League MVP and Rookie of the Year honors last week, the Notre Dame product and his team were able to take advantage of having seen the Thunder bullpen during the season in the playoff opener..
"Late in the game, they brought in a good left-handed pitcher like [James Reeves], who has had a lot of success against us this year," Biggio said. "We were able to make him miss pitches and take our walks when we could. We got runners in scoring position. It was a good inning off a good pitcher and we were able to make the most of it."
Bichette and Berti drove in two runs apiece.
Blue Jays No. 15 prospect T.J. Zeuch scattered eight hits and one walk while striking out five over six frames to pick up the win. Travis Bergen gave up a hit and fanned three over the final 1 1/3 frames for the save..
Kyle Holder and Angel Aguilar each collected three hits for the Thunder.
In other EL playoff action:
RubberDucks 5, Curve 2
Rehabbing Josh Donaldson hit a two-run blast and Ernie Clement added two hits, two runs and an RBI to lead the Akron to victory in Game 1. Kyle Dowdy allowed four runs on two hits and two walks while striking out six over 6 2/3 innings to earn the win. Pirates No. 2 prospect Ke'Bryan Hayes and eighth-ranked Bryan Reynolds plated Altoona's runs. Gameday box score