Lakewood, NJ - The Delmarva Shorebirds battled the Lakewood BlueClaws on Friday night with a seventh inning grand slam proving to be the difference. The Shorebirds (50-42) hung on for a 9-8 victory after erasing an early deficit.
Early on, Lakewood held a comfortable lead thanks to four runs in the first inning. Zach Green sliced a two-run triple, while Willians Astudillo hooked an RBI double. A Shorebirds error contributed to the big inning for the BlueClaws.
The teams traded punches in the middle innings. Each squad scored a single tally in the fourth and fifth innings. Delmarva inched closer with two runs in the sixth on an RBI double from Conor Bierfeldt, and an RBI grounder from Jared Breen.
The turning point came in the seventh inning for Delmarva. Down 7-5, the Shorebirds loaded the bases with a walk and two singles. Bierfeldt launched a moonshot to left field, carrying out for a go-ahead grand slam. With the home run, Bierfeldt now leads the team with 49 RBIs on the season.
The BlueClaws scored in the bottom half to threaten another comeback. Carlos Tocci led off with a single, and later scored on a wild pitch by Alex Santana. After a walk, Herlis Rodriguez stole second base to put the tying run in scoring position. Santana successfully stranded the runner with a flyball out to center.
After a perfect eighth inning with two strikeouts by Santana, Austin Urban came on for the save. Tocci singled again, and subsequently stole second base. After a groundball out, Tocci moved up to third, but Urban struck out Andrew Knapp to end the game.
Urban locked up his second save in three nights, and his fourth of the season. Williams Louico earned the victory for Delmarva, while Will Morris took the loss. Gregory Lorenzo went 3-for-5 with three stolen bases for Delmarva. Chance Sisco extended his hitting streak to 12 games with a 3-for-5 night.
Delmarva and Lakewood will square off again on Saturday night. The Shorebirds have yet to announce a probable starter, while Ranfi Casimiro (2-8, 5.47) will start for Delmarva. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm at FirstEnergy Park.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.