Yusniel Díaz stepped in against a two-time Major League All-Star on Wednesday, and the 22-year-old didn't blink.The fifth-ranked Orioles prospect hammered an RBI triple off Luis Severino and came all the way around to score as Bowie bested Trenton, 7-2, to even the best-of-5 Eastern League Championship Series at 1-1
Yusniel Díaz stepped in against a two-time Major League All-Star on Wednesday, and the 22-year-old didn't blink.
The fifth-ranked Orioles prospect hammered an RBI triple off Luis Severino and came all the way around to score as Bowie bested Trenton, 7-2, to even the best-of-5 Eastern League Championship Series at 1-1 at Arm & Hammer Park.
Diaz added a single and is 9-for-28 with a dinger, a triple, two doubles, a walk, five RBIs and two runs scored through six postseason games.
"Diaz is a guy that rises to the occasion. He's a gifted player," Baysox manager Buck Britton said. "He got a fastball elevated there and didn't try to do too much. Tripled into right-center, throwing error allowed us to score another run. But that was just a good job of putting barrel to the ball right there.
"That was a big one tonight."
With the score tied at 1-1, the right-fielder stepped in against the Yankees ace with two outs and Cedric Mullins on second base. After swinging through a couple of off-speed offerings, Diaz fouled off a 97 mph fastball to stay alive. Severino went back to the heater, but Diaz crushed it to right field, where it was misplayed by Isiah Gilliam and bounced off the wall. Gilliam recovered and threw to the cutoff man, second baseman Hoy Jun Park, who sailed his throw to third into the seats to score the Cuba native.
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In the fifth, Diaz lined up the first pitch he saw from right-hander Miguel Yajure and punched it into left.
O's No. 17 prospect Cody Sedlock (1-0) cruised through five innings, allowing a run on four hits while striking out two. The right-hander retired nine batters in a row between the first and fourth frames and, after yielding back-to-back knocks in the fifth, set down the final three batters he faced. He threw 53 of 83 pitches for strikes.
"Cody did a great job tonight," Britton said. "He mixed it well, good changeup working, pitched out of a couple of jams. He did a nice job for us there, competing against Severino."
Sedlock said he threw more fastballs than he normall does.
"I knew I had to get ahead, get some early contact and had to get through five innings. And everything felt great," he added. "To know that I was able to get a win against [Severino], I think that shows that I'm looking forward to hopefully facing him in a couple of years in a different uniform. ... I wouldn't say I outdueled him because it's a rehab start, but it does count and it definitely gets you locked in."
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Severino (0-1) allowed four runs -- one earned -- on five hits over 3 2/3 frames. He punched out four and threw 47 of 64 pitches for strikes.
"We knew the task ahead of us and they knew the opportunity that they had and they were excited," Britton said. "They did a nice job. Severino had good stuff tonight, but we continued to battle."
T.J. Nichting went 3-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and a run scored, while O's No. 13 prospect Ryan McKenna tripled in the third and scored a run.
Game 1 hero Kellin Deglan doubled, singled, drove in one run and scored the other for Trenton.
Game 3 is Thursday in Bowie.
Rob Terranova is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter, @RobTnova24.