Crawdads earn wild walk-off win

Akins scores decisive run after his homer gets overturned

Jordan Akins has six RBIs over his last four games for Hickory. (Tracy Proffitt/Hickory Crawdads)

By Robert Emrich / Special to | May 23, 2013 10:56 PM ET

If it at first you don't succeed try, try again might be a good motto for Jordan Akins and the Crawdads.

The Rangers outfield prospect tied the game and scored the winning run in the bottom of the 12th as Class A Hickory rallied past Kannapolis, 7-6, on Thursday.

But Akins had already hit what appeared to be a walk-off homer to open the bottom of the ninth with the score was tied, 2-2. While the Crawdads celebrated their apparent victory, the umpires gathered and ruled the ball was foul. Manager Corey Ragsdale was ejected for arguing the call and Akins struck out.

Three innings, Akins got another shot at being the hero after the Intimidators scored four times in top of the 12th. Lewis Brinson, Nick Vickerson and Joey Gallo drew walks to open the home half of the frame. Ryan Rua followed with a two-run single with one out to cut the deficit to 6-4. After Nomar Mazara popped out, Akins tripled home Gallo and Rua.

Akins then scored the winning run as Intimidators hurler Zach Isler uncorked a wild pitch. It was the second time in three innings that the Rangers' 2010 third-round pick was met by a cheering throng at home plate.

Ragsdale wasn't the only one to miss out on the big finish. Four other participants were ejected as well. Kannapolis manager Tommy Thompson and designated hitter Jason Coats were tossed from the game in the seventh while Hickory pitching coach Ryan O'Malley departed in the ninth. Rua was tossed after scoring the tying run in the 12th for the Intimidators.

Vickerson, who started the game in left field, picked up the win after recording the final out of the top of the 12th for the Crawdads.

Micah Johnson had two hits, scored twice and stole his 43rd base of the season for Kannapolis.

Robert Emrich is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @RobertEmrich. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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