Manchester, NH - One week after clinching the team's first playoff berth since 2011, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Toronto Blue Jays Double-A affiliate) saw their chances at a regular season division title take a serious hit with a 3-0 loss to the Hartford Yard Goats (Colorado Rockies) on Saturday night at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
The Trenton Thunder (New York Yankees) won 3-0, which puts New Hampshire one game back in the division with two games to play. Because Trenton has the head-to-head tiebreaker, their magic number to clinch the division is now one. This is the first time since July 14 that the Fisher Cats do not have at least a share of first place.
In order to win the division, the Fisher Cats must finish 2-0, and Trenton must finish 0-2. New Hampshire will host Hartford on Sunday and Monday, with both games scheduled to start at 1:35 p.m.
Unless the Fisher Cats can pull of the comeback, they'll host Game 1 of the Eastern Division Playoffs on Wednesday, September 5 and Game 2 on Thursday, September 6 (both games at 6:35 p.m.) at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
Two Hartford homers decided Saturday's game: a two-run shot from Roberto Ramos in the fourth, and a solo home run from Omar Carrizales in the ninth.
Tayler Saucedo (L, 4-5) pitched well, allowing just two runs on eight hits in six innings with four strikeouts, while Dusty Isaacs (2 IP, 1 H, 1 K) and Travis Bergen (1 IP, 1 R) kept it close out of the bullpen.
Bergen allowed his first earned run since June 15 on the Carrizales home run, and just his second earned run in 35.2 Double-A innings. His ERA is now 0.50.
The Fisher Cats collected nine hits -- all singles -- but went 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position against Frank Duncan (W, 3-4), Brian Moran (H, 3), Logan Cozart (H, 15) and Mitch Horacek (S, 2).
Jon Berti led the way with a 3-for-4 night, while Bo Bichette, Forrest Wall and Santiago Espinal each added two hits apiece.
Sunday's 1:35 p.m. game features pre-game catch on the field from 12:15 p.m. - 12:45 p.m., and Kids Run the Bases after the game thanks to the New Hampshire State Liquor Commission, Division of Enforcement. For tickets and information, visit NHFisherCats.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.