BURLINGTON, VT-The Renegades took advantage of three Lake Monsters errors in the eighth inning and powered up in the ninth to claim a 5-4 victory Wednesday night at Centennial Field. The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for Hudson Valley.
Pitching was the name of the game early as starters Daiveyon Whittle of the Renegades and Richard Guasch of the Lake Monsters allowed no runs in their outings. Whittle fired five innings, striking out four, and has started the season by tossing 10 innings of scoreless baseball. Guasch, meanwhile, went four innings and allowed only one hit with five strikeouts.
The game remained scoreless until the eighth inning when some sloppy play by Vermont allowed Hudson Valley to grab the lead. First-baseman Jacson McGowan started the inning with a groundball single to center. He was lifted by pinch-runner Cristhian Pedroza who motored to third when the next hitter, leftfielder Garrett Hiott, smacked a single to right. After a shallow flyout, second-baseman Luis Arcendo laid down a suicide squeeze bunt to score Pedroza. On the play, Lake Monsters relief pitcher Angello Infante threw wide of first, and down the rightfield line, to put runners at second and third with one out.
Designated hitter Greg Jones stood in next against a drawn in infield and grounded to short. Vermont's Yerdel Vargas booted the ball allowing Hiott to score and sending Arcendo to third. Next, Infante threw errantly on a pickoff attempt at third, which allowed Arcendo to score and push the Renegades' lead to 3-0.
Vermont made a game of it in the bottom-half. With one out, back-to-back singles and a fielding error by Arcendo loaded the bases. Hudson Valley reliever Jose Roca promptly balked in a run, then threw a wild pitch to score another as the Lake Monsters pulled to within one.
However, the Renegades would get the runs back in the ninth. After a one-out single, Pedroza drilled a two-run homerun to center to push Hudson Valley's lead to 5-2. It was the first homerun of the season for the Renegades.
The Lake Monsters would not give in as they scored twice more off Roca in their half of the ninth. After a leadoff double and fly out, Vargas belted a two-run dinger to left to make it a one-run game again. It was his first homerun of the season. Roca would then issue a walk to catcher Matt Cross before he was replaced by fellow reliever Hector Figueroa.
Figueroa would shut the door. After getting a fielder's choice groundout and moving a runner to second on a wild pitch, he got rightfielder Danny Bautista to strike out swinging to end the game and nail down the first save of the season for Hudson Valley relievers.
The win went to Roca (1-0) who allowed five hits and four runs, only two of which were earned, in 3.1 innings. The loss went to Infante (0-1) of the Lake Monsters. The right-hander gave up five runs, three earned, on five hits in five frames. He also struck out four.
The Renegades collected six hits, three of which came out of the number seven hole in the lineup. McGowan went 2-3 before Pedroza replaced him in the eighth and drilled his two-run homer in the ninth. The Lake Monsters had seven hits. Second-baseman Nick Ward had two singles in five at-bats, while centerfielder Kevin Richards went 2-4 with two singles and a run scored.
There was also a triple play in the game. In the fifth, the Renegades had runners at first and second with no one out before third-baseman Carlos Vargas grounded to Lake Monsters third-baseman Jordan Diaz. Diaz stepped on third, fired to Ward at second, who then relayed a throw to first to complete the 5-4-3 triple play.
The Renegades wrap-up their three-game series with the Lake Monsters tomorrow in a 7:05 start. Right-hander Zack Trageton (1-0, 0.00 ERA) will go for Hudson Valley against Vermont righty Michael Murray (1-0, 1.80 ERA).
Hudson Valley returns home when they open a three-game series against the Aberdeen Ironbirds on Friday. First-pitch is set for 7:05 and there will be fireworks following the game. Tickets are on sale and can be purchased online at hvrenegades.com, in person at the Dutchess Stadium ticket window, or by calling the ticket office at 845-838-0094.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.