The Doubledays brought the bats to Western New York in hopes of securing their first win on the 2019 schedule, but a late surge by the Batavia Muckdogs (2-2) was enough to stave off Auburn (0-4) in a 7-5 game.
The Muckdogs struck first at Dwyer Stadium tonight, as 2019 draftee Nic Ready plated lead-off man JD Orr with an RBI double to left field in the bottom of the first inning. With Ready on second base, the next hitter, Harrison DiNicola, plated the Air Force Academy gaduate with a ground ball in between first and second to drive the score to 2-0.
However, Doubledays 3B Jack Dunn provided the fireworks and took a hacksaw to the Muckdog lead with his first professional base hit in the top of the second. After going hitless in his pro debut yesterday, Dunn sent a mammoth home run to left to make it 2-1.
Batavia put up a crooked number in the third inning, however, to extend its lead. Albert Guaimaro plated JD Orr for Orr’s second run of the game and a 3-1 Batavia lead, and then Ready made it happen again. He blasted his second double of the game to deep left over DDays OF Ricardo Mendez’s head to plate Milton Smith. After Andrew Turner hit Guaimaro home on an RBI groundout, it was 5-1 Batavia after three.
In the fourth, Auburn got it all back. Ricardo Mendez spent the majority of 2018 in a Doubledays uniform, but laced a 2-RBI single to right field, bringing Caldioli Sanfler and Jake Randa home to cut the deficit to two.
One batter later, that deficit was no more. Auburn 1B Anthony Peroni did his best Jack Dunn impression, and sent a game-tying home run over the left field wall, plating himself and Mendez and making it a 5-5 game in the top of the fourth.
The two would stay deadlocked at five apiece, and Auburn had its chance. In the top of the 8th, Sanfler and Wilmer Perez hit back-to-back singles to lead off the inning. Jake Randa’s sacrifice bunt attempt didn’t hit the soil on a pop out back to then-pitcher Raul Brito, but Jack Dunn grounded out, advancing the two into scoring position. A sterling chance to take the lead, but when Mendez stepped into the batter’s box, chaos ensued.
Sanfler was caught in between third and home on a 3-2 pitch and tagged out to end the threat in the 8th, with the game knotted up at 5-5.
Karma proved true for Batavia, and they brought the fire in the bottom half of the eighth. The Muckdogs plated their sixth and seventh runs of the game on a DiNicola single and a Samuel Castro single, respectively.
Both Peroni and JT Arruda walked with one out in the ninth to provide a bit of a scare and slap the tying runs on base, but Landerson Pena popped out in the infield in his first plate appearance for the second out, and Doubleday SS Jose Sanchez struck out on three pitches to end the game.
Doubledays starting pitcher Rafael Gomez went five innings and allowed 11 hits, which resulted in five earned runs in his 2019 debut. LHP Gilberto Chu came on in relief, and threw two scoreless frames before being tagged for those two go-ahead runs in the eighth. 2017 11th Round selection Dakota Bennett started on the mound for the Muckdogs, and allowed five earned runs on seven hits.
The Doubledays are again in Western New York tomorrow for a condensed double-header (two seven-inning games) with the Muckdogs. The first game starts at 4:00 p.m. and will be a continuation of a 2-0 Auburn lead in the bottom of the first retroactive to Saturday night, and Game Two will follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game One. RHP Leif Strom gets the ball for Auburn in the first game, and LHP Alex Troop (on rehab from A Hagerstown) toes the rubber in the subsequent contest.
You can listen, as always, listen to the broadcast on FingerLakes1.com Radio. Pregame begins at 3:50 pm with every pitch from the doubleheader to follow into the night.
By Jack McMullen / Auburn Doubledays