RailRiders sink Pawtucket, get back to .500 for first time since May

By DJ Eberle - [email protected]
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders catcher Wilkin Castillo slides safely into second base after a wild pitch by Pawtucket Red Sox southpaw Jalen Beeks during the second inning Friday at PNC Field. - Tony Callaio | For Times Leader
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders left fielder Zack Zehner points to the sky after hitting his second double of the night on Friday against the Pawtucket Red Sox at PNC Field. - Tony Callaio | For Times Leader
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom gets the putout of Pawtucket Red Sox left fielder Aneury Tavarez at first base on Friday. - Tony Callaio | For Times Leader
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders starting pitcher Chance Adams spun five one-run innings Friday night agaisnt the Pawtucket Red Sox. - - Tony Callaio | For Times Leader
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom stays alert while Pawtucket Red Sox first baseman Sam Travis leads off of first base. - - Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

MOOSIC — It’s been a long road back to .500 for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders.

After spending a month-and-a-half with a losing record, the RailRiders finally got back to even Friday night against the Pawtucket Red Sox. And in impressive fashion, no less.

Every RailRider reached base and all but one recorded a hit while Chance Adams was able to string together back-to-back strong starts en route to a 7-4 victory over the Red Sox. For the first time since May 17, when the RailRiders were 19-19, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre is sporting a .500 record.

“(Bullpen coach Doug Davis) predicted it because he said we had to get back to .500 before the end of the month. That’s what we were aiming for,” RailRiders manager Bobby Mitchell said. “We kept getting close, close, close and then, yeah, we’re here.

“Guys did a great job, I thought tonight, again, two-out base hits. That one inning when we scored the runs, it’s like, you just keep getting those, you’re going to win a lot of ballgames.”

The RailRiders jump-started things with a five-run second inning.

Wilkin Castillo got Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on the board with a two-out, two-run single to score Zack Zehner, who led off the frame with a double, and Rey Navarro, who got aboard with a five-pitch walk. Clint Frazier would put the RailRiders up by four runs with a two-run double to deep center, scoring Castillo and Tyler Wade, who got aboard with his own five-pitch walk.

Billy McKinney finished the scoring with an RBI double to right center, bringing home Frazier.

“Bottom of the lineup, we have to get on base because those guys (at the top of the lineup), they’re really good,” said Castillo, the RailRiders’ No. 9 hitter. “Every time we get on base, we have a chance at producing, scoring some runs.”

“There’s really no break in our lineup,” added Wade, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s lead-off hitter, who reached base four times. “Guys like that at the bottom of our lineup can put competitive at-bats together. When they kind of turn the lineup over with one out, two outs, it sparks things. It gets us going.”

Five runs would be more than enough for Adams, who spun five one-run innings to pick up his third win of the season.

Even though he only retired the side once, the 23-year-old right-hander was able to pitch around trouble.

Pawtucket got the lead-off batter on against Adams twice and also had multiple base runners in a pair of innings. The only time the Red Sox did any damage against Adams was when Mike Olt hit a lead-off home run in the fourth inning.

Adams gave up five hits and walked a pair while striking out five, mixing in his slider nicely with his fastball.

“Defense made really good plays behind me and I was really clicking with Wilky behind me. So it was a good game,” Adams said. “It’s good because when you have that type of a lead, you just challenge hitters and just throw fastballs. like I did on that 3-2 when (Olt) hit a homer but it didn’t matter. I can just challenge and attack the zone a little more without being afraid to give up some runs.”

Injury report

RailRiders first baseman Tyler Austin was placed on the seven-day disabled list on Friday with a back injury suffered in Thursday’s game in Lehigh Valley. Austin had an MRI on Friday and the team received some relatively good news.

Austin only has some inflammation in his back and is going to take some anti-inflammatories and see a doctor on Monday “just to check it out,” according to Mitchell.

RailRiders 7, Pawtucket 4

Pawtucket`AB`R`H`BI

Tavarez lf`5`0`0`0

Sturgeon cf`5`0`1`0

Travis 1b`4`0`0`0

Lind dh`3`1`1`0

Olt 3b`3`2`2`1

Flores rf`4`1`3`0

Butler c`3`0`0`1

Miller ss`4`02`2

Lopez 2b`4`0`0`0

Totals`35`4`9`4

RailRiders`AB`R`H`BI

Wade 2b`3`1`2`0

Frazier cf`5`1`1`2

McKinney rf`4`0`1`1

McBroom 1b`4`1`1`0

Zehner lf`4`1`2`0

Navarro ss`3`2`1`2

Caldwell 3b`3`0`0`0

Mazzilli dh`4`0`2`0

Castillo c`4`1`1`2

Totals`34`7`11`7

DP: Red Sox 1, RailRiders 1; LOB: Red Sox 8, RailRiders 7; 2B: Flores (7), Zehner 2 (10), Frazier (13), McKinney (5), McBroom (12); HR: Olt (10), Navarro (3).

Pawtucket`000`101`020 — 4

RailRiders`050`020`00x — 7

Pawtucket`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Beeks (L, 5-5)`2.1`6`5`5`3`1

Buttery`2`1`1`1`0`2

Jerez`1.2`2`1`1`1`2

Scott`1`0`0`0`0`2

Brasier`1`2`0`0`0`0

RailRiders`IP`H`R`ER`BB`SO

Adams (W, 3-3)`5`5`1`1`2`5

Tarpley`1`2`1`1`1`0

Harvey`2`2`2`2`1`1

Coshow (S, 3)`1`0`0`0`0`1

WP: Beeks.

Balk: Beeks.

Umpires: Scott Costello, HP; Alex Tosi, 1B; Ryan Wills, 3B.

Time: 2:49; Attendance: 9,277.

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders catcher Wilkin Castillo slides safely into second base after a wild pitch by Pawtucket Red Sox southpaw Jalen Beeks during the second inning Friday at PNC Field.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_SWB-Pawtucket-6-29-3.jpgScranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders catcher Wilkin Castillo slides safely into second base after a wild pitch by Pawtucket Red Sox southpaw Jalen Beeks during the second inning Friday at PNC Field. Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders left fielder Zack Zehner points to the sky after hitting his second double of the night on Friday against the Pawtucket Red Sox at PNC Field.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_SWB-Pawtucket-6-29-4.jpgScranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders left fielder Zack Zehner points to the sky after hitting his second double of the night on Friday against the Pawtucket Red Sox at PNC Field. Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom gets the putout of Pawtucket Red Sox left fielder Aneury Tavarez at first base on Friday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_SWB-Pawtucket-6-29-1.jpgScranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom gets the putout of Pawtucket Red Sox left fielder Aneury Tavarez at first base on Friday. Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders starting pitcher Chance Adams spun five one-run innings Friday night agaisnt the Pawtucket Red Sox.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_SWB-Pawtucket-6-29-2.jpgScranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders starting pitcher Chance Adams spun five one-run innings Friday night agaisnt the Pawtucket Red Sox. Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom stays alert while Pawtucket Red Sox first baseman Sam Travis leads off of first base.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/web1_SWB-Pawtucket-6-29-5.jpgScranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders first baseman Ryan McBroom stays alert while Pawtucket Red Sox first baseman Sam Travis leads off of first base. Tony Callaio | For Times Leader

By DJ Eberle

[email protected]

T.L. EXPRESS

Today’s Game: The RailRiders continue their three-game series against the Pawtucket Red Sox. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.

Probable Pitchers: SWB LHP Josh Rogers (6-5, 3.32 ERA) vs. PAW LHP Josh D. Smith (4-3, 2.61)

Today at PNC Field: Teddy Bear Toss — Fans are encouraged to bring a new stuffed animal to the game and throw it onto the field after the fourth inning, fans who show up with a stuffed animal will receive a free lawn seat to the game; all stuffed animals will be donated to the Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital and to the Ronald McDonald House of Scranton; Legends Series — The RailRiders welcome Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson to PNC Field as the third Legends Series appearance for 2018.

Riding the Rails: INF Brandon Drury recalled to NY Yankees; INF Tyler Austin on the 7-day disabled list; RHP Brady Lail transferred to Double-A Trenton; RHP Luis Cessa optioned from NY Yankees and has reported; INF Ryan McBroom Trenton; LHP Stephen Tarpley promoted from Trenton.

On Radio: All RailRiders games can be heard live on NEPA Sports Radio – The Game.

HOW THEY SCORED

RAILRIDERS SECOND: Jalen Beeks pitching. Zack Zehner doubles to deep left. Rey Navarro walks. With L.J. Mazzilli batting, Beeks balks, Zehner to third, Navarro to second Wilkin Castillo singles to right center, Zehner and Navarro score. With Tyler Wade batting, wild pitch by Beeks, Castillo to second. Wade walks. Clint Frazier doubles to deep center, Castillo and Wade score. Billy McKinney doubles to right, Frazier scores. RAILRIDERS 5-0

PAWTUCKET FOURTH: Chance Adams pitching. Mike Olt homers to deep left. RAILRIDERS 5-1

RAILRIDERS FIFTH: Ty Buttrey pitching. Ryan McBroom doubles to right. Williams Jerez replaces Buttrey. Rey Navarro homers to deep left, McBroom scores. RAILRIDERS 7-1

PAWTUCKET SIXTH: Stephen Tarpley pitching. Adam Lind singles to shallow third. Mike Olt singles to left, Lind to second. Ramon Flores grounds into a force out at first, Lind to third, Olt out at second, Flores to first. Dan Butler walks, Flores to second. Mike Miller grounds out to second, Lind scores, Flores to third, Butler to second. RAILRIDERS 7-2

PAWTUCKET EIGHTH: Joe Harvey pitching. Mike Olt walks. Ramon Flores doubles to left, Olt to third. Dan Bulter grounds out to third, Olt scores. Mike Miller singles to center, Flores scores. RAILRIDERS 7-4

Reach DJ Eberle at 570-991-6398 or on Twitter @ByDJEberle

Reach DJ Eberle at 570-991-6398 or on Twitter @ByDJEberle