The Greeneville Astros (22-19) fought hard Saturday night in front of a packed house to take down the Danville Braves (23-20) by a final score of 7-4. Two big innings powered the Astros to take the final game of the series from the Braves.
Astros starter Hansel Paulino (1-1) breezed through the first inning, setting the stage for the offense to shine. Center fielder Wilson Amador was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and stole second base, his twelfth stolen base on the season. After a strike out and a walk, a wild pitch moved both runners to second and third setting up Jose Benjamin for a two RBI single giving the Astros the early lead.
It wasn't until the top of the third that Danville would scratch some runs together. Danville loaded the bases on two singles and a walk, but Paulino was able to force Drew Waters to ground into a double play that brought one run across. First baseman Austin Bush drove in the second run of the inning on an RBI single to tie the game before Paulino struck out Justin Smith, ending the inning.
Two innings later the Braves took their first lead of the game on an RBI double by Waters. Reliever Willy Collado (1-1) struck out Riley Delgado to start the inning before walking Garrison Schwartz, who ended up scoring from first base on Waters' double.
Greeneville had their own answer as they dropped five runs on Danville in the bottom of the sixth. Frankeny Fernandez walked in the first at bat of the inning, advancing to second on a Benjamin single. Catcher Martin Figueroa then hit a grounder to third, but a throwing error scored Fernandez and put runners on the corners. Next up to bat was Reid Russell who worked a walk to load the bases. Second baseman Joan Mauricio singled to right field scoring Benjamin for the second run of the inning. Danville got the first out of the inning on a force out at home plate by Reiny Beltre and recorded the second out on a sacrifice fly by Amador. Back-to-back RBI singles by Cody Bohanek and Gilberto Celestino brought in two more runs making it a 7-3 game in favor of the Astros.
The Braves would add a lone run in the top of the eighth on a Justin Smith home run on a fly ball over the center field wall. Reliever Cole Watts (2-3) pitched the final four innings only giving up the one run, three hits and striking out four.
Greeneville will search for their second win in as many days as they welcome the Burlington Royals tomorrow night for a three game series. First pitch is set for 6:00pm.
The Astros are the Appalachian League affiliate of the Houston Astros. For more information, visit www.greenevilleastros.com or call (423) 638-0411.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.