The Tri-City ValleyCats opened the 2012 NY-Penn League season Monday night by defeating the Vermont Lake Monsters 10-2 at Centennial Field in Burlington, Vermont.
Vincent Velasquez scattered two hits across five scoreless innings of work, earning his first victory since undergoing Tommy John Surgery in 2010. The 'Cats bullpen combined to hold the Lake Monsters to just 2 runs, closing the game out with 4 innings of relief from John Neely, Jamaine Cotton, and Blake Ford.
At the plate, the 'Cats offense came alive, pounding out 11 hits and 10 runs. Up 1-0 going into the 5th, 2B Austin Elkins hit a three-run home-run to put the 'Cats up for good. Five ValleyCats finished the game with two hits apiece, including Catcher Jobduan Morales, and Right fielder Emilio King who each contributed run-scoring doubles as part of a three-run sixth inning which put the 'Cats up 8-0 going to the 7th.
The victory was Tri-City's first on Opening Day since 2010. They improved their Opening Day record to 4-7 overall.
Tri-City will continue their series with Vermont tonight at 7:00pm when Aaron West of the 'Cats takes the mound opposite Chris Lamb of the Lake Monsters.
Be sure to help welcome the 'Cats when they return home this Wednesday and Thursday night as they continue their four-game series with Vermont at "the Joe."
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.