After leading for much of the game, Big Train blew a two-run lead in the eighth and a three-run lead in the ninth, losing 6-5 to Alexandria on a walk-off Tuesday night.
It was a reversal of fortunes from Sunday night, when Big Train walked off against the Aces at Povich Field, 6-5.
Bethesda grabbed an early lead, as Cody Brown (Mississippi State) led off the game with a home run, his first of the year. Despite the early offense, Big Train was unable to add on, as they didn’t score again until the eighth inning.
Meanwhile, Bethesda’s starting pitching continued to shine, as Tim Yandel (Tulane) pitched 5 2/3 shutout innings, allowing just two hits while striking out three. Luis Collazo (Virginia Tech) finished off the sixth for Yandel, and Mike Rescigno (Maryland) struck out the side in the seventh around a walk.
Holding onto a 1-0 lead going into the eighth, Big Train got an important insurance run, after Zach Kirtley (St. Mary’s, Calif.) doubled to lead off the frame and came around on a Justin Morris (Maryland) sac fly.
This lead wasn’t safe, though, as Josh Thorne (Stetson) came on in the bottom of the eighth and loaded the bases with only one out. He induced an infield fly for the second out, and then went 0-2 to Aces pinch hitter Anthony Pacheco. Instead of getting the strikeout, however, Thorne surrendered a two-run single to Pacheco that tied the game going into the ninth.
Big Train answered in the top of the ninth, as a walk to Logan Farrar (Virginia Commonwealth) and a single by Brown put runners on the corners with one away. Brandon Hunley (Sacramento State) came through, lifting a sac fly to center to give Bethesda a 3-2 lead. Kirtley then drove Brown home with his eighth double of the season, and Big Train added another on an RBI single to center by Chris Lewis (Sacramento State).
Holding onto 5-2 lead going into the bottom of the ninth, Tyler Tobin (George Mason) came on to close out the win. After he struck out the first hitter, the wheels began to come off for Tobin, who loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. He hit the next Ace he faced on an 0-2 count, forcing home a run and cutting the lead to 5-3. Aces left fielder Danny Pardo then drove home another run with a single, pulling the Aces to within one still with just one out. Then, shortstop Mike Marcinko lined a two-run double, driving home the winning run and sending Big Train home with their fourth loss of the season.
The loss Big Train’s first on the road this season, and it snapped a four game winning streak. They dropped to 18-4 on the year, but still maintain a 6 ½ game lead over the second-place Vienna River Dogs in the South Division.
Notes: The game was a make-up contest after the scheduled meeting on June 18 was rained out…Kirtley went 4-for-5 to raise his batting average to .378…Brown and Lewis each collected two hits…Yandel lowered his ERA to 1.19…Big Train returns home Wednesday night to face the D.C. Grays at 7:30 p.m.
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