BINGHAMTON, NY - The Rumble Ponies began a new era of baseball in Binghamton with a bang, defeating the Erie SeaWolves, 7-5, in their home opener on Thursday night at NYSEG Stadium. Binghamton supported a strong performance from starting pitcher P.J. Conlon by plating seven runs in the first four innings. Cody Decker delivered three hits in his Rumble Pony debut, helping stave off a vicious late-game rally by Erie. Alberto Baldonado and the Binghamton bullpen preserved the lead in the final three innings.
After a scoreless first inning, Binghamton catcher Tomas Nido led off the second inning with the first-ever Rumble Pony home run at NYSEG Stadium. The long ball, Nido's first of his Double-A career, earned Binghamton a 1-0 advantage.
The Rumble Ponies offense continued its early-game onslaught in the bottom of the third inning. Matt Oberste kick started the frame with an infield single, and then advanced to second base on a throwing error by Gabriel Quintana. After a Cody Decker strikeout, L.J. Mazzilli's single moved Oberste to third. With runners on the corners, Nido grounded out to third, plating Oberste for a 2-0 Binghamton lead. The next batter, Luis Guillorme, bashed a single up the middle to bring home Mazzilli, giving the Rumble Ponies a 3-0 lead after three innings.
Binghamton exploded for four fourth-inning runs, all scoring with two outs. Following a David Thompson strikeout, Oberste came to the dish with two outs and Kevin Kaczmarski on first. After Kaczmarski swiped second base, Oberste walked to extend the inning. With runners on first and third, Decker doubled down the right-field line, clearing the bases and handing the Rumble Ponies a 5-0 cushion. Mazzilli followed with his own run-scoring double, before Guillorme's two-bagger then scored Mazzilli. Binghamton scored four runs on four fourth-inning hits.
P.J. Conlon (2-0) tossed five scoreless innings before Jason Krizan touched him up for a two-run home run in the top of the sixth. Conlon would last six innings, strike out five, and earn his second win in as many starts this season.
The SeaWolves would plate three more runs in the game, all in the seventh inning. After a Kevin Kaczmarski miscue in left field, Erie rallied for two hits and a walk off of Luis Mateo, to score all three unearned runs. Alberto Baldonado pitched a perfect final two innings, extending his season-opening scoreless innings streak to five frames.
The Rumble Ponies (4-3) continue their three-game series against the SeaWolves on Friday night at 7:00 PM. RHP Corey Oswalt takes the hill against RHP Artie Lewicki. The Horizons Federal Credit Union Pregame Show can be heard starting a 6:50 PM on NewsRadio 1290 AM WNBF and the Binghamton Rumble Ponies channel on TuneIn.
POSTGAME NOTES: Cody Decker had 3 hits and 2 RBI in his Rumble Pony debut, while Luis Guillorme's two hits leaves him 7-for-his-last-9….P.J. Conlon progresses to 14-3 in his Minor League career and is the third Eastern League pitcher to 2 wins
Binghamton and Erie play the middle game of the three-game set on Friday at 7:05 PM. Tickets for the game and Binghamton's entire home schedule can be purchased at the NYSEG Stadium box office, online on www.bingrp.com and over the phone at (607) 722-FUNN.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.