Last updated: August 15. 2013 2:54AM - 1708 Views
By DAVE ROSENGRANT drosengrant@timesleader.com

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MOOSIC — Chris Bootcheck represented Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the Triple-A All-Star Game last month.

But since then, the RailRiders’ starter had trouble regaining that form that made him an All-Star for the International League.

On Wednesday night, the right-hander looked like the starter that had a sub-3.00 ERA for most of the first half as he pitched seven shutout innings – his best start of the season – and only gave up three hits.

Unfortunately for Bootcheck, he didn’t earn his first win since July 13 as Charlotte tied the game with a pair of runs in the top of the ninth and won it 4-2 with two more in the 10th.

Bootcheck tied two season-bests by going seven innings while only allowing three hits.

The trouble came against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre reliever Mike Zagurski. Charlotte scored twice to tie the score at 2-2 in a ninth inning when there wasn’t a hard-hit ball against the lefty, as the Knights capitalized on a bloop single and a sac fly.

But Marcus Semien hit one hard off Zagurski in the 10th with a solo homer for a 3-2 lead. A sacrifice fly gave the Knights an insurance run, handing the RailRiders with one of their worst losses of the season — and one that could be hard to rebound from with time running out in the season.

The RailRiders made mistakes on the bases as well, getting picked off twice. Catcher J.R. Murphy made a costly throwing error in the 10th, and the team went 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position.

On top of that, the RailRiders squandered an opportunity to win it in the bottom of the ninth as they couldn’t bring home Ronnier Mustelier from third with just one out.

The first trouble Bootcheck got in was the top of the fourth. Leury Garcia led off with a single – the first hit allowed by Bootcheck – and a one-out walk to Brent Morel put runners on first and third.

Bootcheck induced a fielder’s choice grounder to get the second out but then issued a walk to load the bases. He got out of the jam getting Steve Tolleson to fly out.

The Knights started to hit Bootcheck hard in the sixth on a Semien deep fly out to centerfield and a double in the gap by Morel. But again Bootcheck didn’t allow the run to score.

The right-hander allowed a single and a walk with one out in the seventh to get in another jam. But he got the last two batters to fly out to end the inning and keep the shutout going.

Dan Johnson’s RBI single in the bottom of the first gave the RailRiders a 1-0 lead to give Bootcheck enough to work with until Alberto Gonzalez made it a 2-0 lead with a solo shot in the bottom of the fifth. His second longball of the season was a line drive that bounced on top of the wall in left field and over for the score.

Knights 4, RailRiders 2 (10)



Garcia ss`5`0`1`0`Garcia rf`5`1`1`0

Semien 3b`5`1`1`1`Murphy c`5`0`1`0

Morel dh`3`1`1`0`Mesa cf`5`0`2`0

Ishikawa rf`5`1`1`0`Johnson 1b`4`0`2`1

Wilkins 1b`3`0`0`1`Ruiz dh`4`0`0`0

Tolleson 2b`4`1`1`0`Adams 3b`4`0`0`0

Gallagher cf`3`0`1`0`Mustelier lf`2`0`1`0

Earley lf`4`0`1`1`Gonzalez ss`4`1`1`1

Gonzalez c`3`0`0`1`Harris 2b`3`0`0`0




E – Garcia (2), Gonzalez (2), Murphy (5). LOB —CHA 8, SWB 8. TEAM RISP – CHA 2-for-8, SWB 1-for-8. 2B – Morel (25). HR – Gonzalez (1). Semien (3). SB – Garcia (1), Tolleson (14), Morel (13). . GIDP – CHA 0 , SWB 2. Pick Off – Berken 2 (Mustelier at first), (Mesa at first). PB – Gonzalez.




Berken `6`6`2`1`2`5

Heath `2`2`0`0`0`3

Septimo (W, 2-0)`2`0`0`0`2`4


Bootcheck `7`3`0`0`3`4

Daley (H,4)`1`0`0`0`0`1

Zagurski (BS, 3; L, 6-3)`2`4`4`3`2`2

IBB – Johnson (by Berken)

Umpires— Home, John Tumpane; First, Jon Saphire; Second, Chad Whitson; Third, A.J. Johnson

T— 2:57 A— 4,965 (10,000)

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