Williamsport, Pa - Kendall Simmons blasted his seventh home run of the year and the Crosscutters cranked out a season-high in runs during a 9-3 blowout win of first-place Batavia on Monday night to extend the team's win streak to six straight. It is the longest win streak for the Crosscutters in over three years since they last won six in a row in July 2016.
Simmons had three RBI in the game including a sacrifice fly in the first as well as his two-run homer in the fifth. He also made a scintillating diving stop of a grounder in the sixth to potentially keep Batavia from cutting the score to 6-5. The 19-year-old infielder from Macon, Ga. has five homers in his last nine games and has moved up to second-most in the NYPL just one off the league lead.
Williamsport (20-29) trailed 2-0 right at the start but put up four runs in the bottom of the first in a rally that included a two-run double from D.J. Stewart. The rally came against NYPL ERA leader Julio Frias who entered the night with a 1.93 mark.
Nate Fassnacht returned to the lineup going 2-for-4 with a couple RBI on a hit in a three-run rally in the sixth. D.J. Stewart had a pair of doubles and drove in a couple.
The Crosscutters had won their last four games all by one run each before the big win today. Williamsport is 10-2 in its last 12 games which is best in the NYPL in the second half of the season.
The Batavia Muckdogs got to Leonel Aponte early with the first five men reaching base. A bases-loaded hit batter of Harrison Dinicola and an RBI single for Julian Infante put the Dogs up 2-0. Aponte battled back in the base-loaded jam to record the first two outs before his night ended earlier than expected in the first inning. Rafael Carvajal recorded the final out to cut the rally short.
The Cutters have made a habit of exciting comebacks in this homestand. They came from behind in this on as well but it just happened to come earlier. A four-run rally in the first off Frias began with singles by Johan Rojas and Nate Fassnacht followed by walks to Bryson Stott and Logan O'Hoppe. The free pass for O'Hoppe forced in the first run and then Kendall Simmons fly to center brought home Fassnacht for a 2-2 tie.
D.J. Stewart's pop-up down the line in left stayed barely fair and came free of Troy Johnston's diving efforts for a great catch thus resulting in a two-run double and a 4-2 lead.
After that wild first inning, both pitchers settled down and Carvajal and Arias put up a few zeros on the board.
Williamsport extended its lead in the fifth to 6-2 on the vicious blast over the wall in center by Simmons after O'Hoppe had reached on a flared single to shallow right-center.
Batavia threatened to come back in the top of the sixth but the Cutters made it through. An RBI single by Jack Strunc cut the lead to 6-3 and put runners at second and third when he advanced on a throw home. But Tyler Burch struck out Ronal Reynoso swinging and then Andres Sthormes bid for a hit to right was denied on a diving stop by Simmons at second making a strong snow-cone grab on the ball before popping to his feet and throwing him out at first on a strong pick on the short-hop by Herbert Iser.
The Cutters capped their scoring with three runs in the sixth on three walks from reliever Joniker Vaillobos and only one hit. Nate Fassnacht drove a two-run single back up the middle to push the lead to 8-3 and then Rojas scored on a wild pitch for a 9-3 advantage which they maintained to the end
The Crosscutters and Muckdogs will rematch Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. with LHP Spencer Van Scoyoc the probable starter.
- Williamsport also scored this many runs on July 1 in a 9-1 win over Mahoning Valley.
- The last time the Cutters won six straight was July 21-27, 2016.
- The Cutters are 3-4 against Batavia this season but have won 3 of the last 4.
- Williamsport turned four double plays in the game.
- Batavia is the last remaining original member of the NYPL. The Western New York based franchise was called the Batavia Clippers in the league's inaugural season in 1939.
- The blowout win snapped a string of four straight one-run games for Williamsport. It was also third come-from-behind win for the Cutters.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.