The Big Train hosted the rival Rockville Express on Friday night in front of what turned out to be the largest crowd of the regular season.
Bubba Derby (San Diego State) got the start for the Big Train, and gave up no earned runs over six innings. Derby gave up just two hits and two walks while striking out a season-high eight batters. However, two unearned runs would score while Derby was on the mound, and he would ultimately leave the game trailing 2-1.
The first Big Train run would come in the fifth inning off the bat of Ty France (San Diego State), who took an 0-1 pitch deep to left-center field for his first home run of the season.
After Derby’s departure, Brock Larson (San Francisco) would come on in relief to pitch two shutout innings. With the Big Train trailing, Larson did exactly what the team needed, giving up no runs over his two innings of work to keep the deficit at one run. Larson would finish with three strikeouts.
In the bottom of the eighth inning, the Big Train offense would reward Larson for his efforts on the mound.
After Ricky Santiago (Florida Atlantic), David Del Grande (Sacramento State), and Kyle Wernicki (Virginia Tech) all reached to load the bases with no outs, Johnny Cole (Coastal Carolina) would hit a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Santiago and tying the game at 2-2.
The Express would elect to pitch around cleanup hitter Tucker Tobin (George Mason), giving France the opportunity to swing with one out, the bases loaded and a chance at giving the Big Train a late lead. After falling behind 0-2, France managed to muscle a sac fly to right field, plating Del Grande and giving the Big Train the 3-2 advantage heading into the ninth inning.
Will Resnik (High Point) would come on to pitch a perfect ninth inning, striking out the final batter to secure the 3-2 victory for the Big Train. The win gives the Big Train a 15-4 record, and pushes Rockville to four games out of first place.
The Big Train will look to make it 16 wins in their first 20 games on Saturday, as they take on the Youse’s Orioles in Glen Burnie in the first game of a three-game road trip. The probable for the game is Danny Mooney (Davidson), who is 1-1 with a 1.95 ERA in four starts so far this season.
Following Saturday’s game, the Big Train will take on the Vienna River Dogs on Sunday and the Gaithersburg Giants on Monday before returning home to Povich Field for a doubleheader against the D.C. Grays on Tuesday. The games are scheduled to start at 5:00 PM and 7:30 PM, respectively, so come on out and get a two-for-Tuesday double dose of baseball!
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