Posted: Saturday, July 21st 2012 at 11:42pm
Scranton runs away from G-Braves, 13-8
LAWRENCEVILLE -– The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees scored eight runs in the first inning and never trailed, defeating the Gwinnett Braves, 13-8 on Saturday night at Coolray Field. Cole Garner crushed a grand slam as part of the big first frame and Brandon Laird added a homer and four RBIs of his own as the Yankees pounded out 15 total hits. With the loss, the G-Braves are a season-high 10 games under the .500 mark.
The Yankees jumped out to an early lead for the second straight night, plating eight runs before Gwinnett hitters grabbed their bats. Starter Brent Leach (L, 0-1) failed to get out of the first inning in his G-Braves debut, allowing seven runs on three hits and four walks in just a third of an inning. The left-hander yielded a leadoff walk to Chris Dickerson, single to Kevin Russo and RBI double to Corban Joseph as Scranton jumped out to a 1-0 lead. Following a walk to Jack Cust to load the bases, Leach allowed back-to-back bases loaded walks to Laird and Francisco Cervelli for a 3-0 Yankees advantage. Garner followed with the grand slam to left, opening up a 7-0 lead and chasing Leach from the game.
Buddy Carlyle relieved Leach and served up back-to-back triples to Dickerson and Russo as the Yankees took an 8-0 lead. Carlyle settled down to work 3.2 stellar innings, surrendering just one run on three hits while striking out four.
The G-Braves were held scoreless by Scranton right-hander Ramon Ortiz over the first four innings, but finally solved the veteran in the fifth with a six-run frame. Ruben Gotay led off the inning with a double, and Lance Zawadzki reached on an infield pop-up that was dropped by the third baseman Russo for an error. Following a groundout, Luis Durango singled home the first run of the game for Gwinnett. Felix Pie added a sacrifice fly scoring Zawadzki, and Ernesto Mejia tallied his International League leading 67th RBI with a single. The inning was broken open when Stefan Gartrell blasted a three-run home run off the brick wall in left, cutting the deficit to 8-6.
Only one of the six runs was earned to Ortiz (W, 8-3), who worked 5.0 innings with eight hits allowed, one walk and one strikeout.
The Yankees extended the lead to 11-6 with a three-run sixth inning against Billy Bullock. Joseph singled to score Garner, and two batters later, Laird singled to score both Ramiro Pena and Russo. Dusty Hughes was tagged for two more runs, one earned over 2.0 innings and Cory Gearrin worked 1.1 scoreless, one-hit innings for the G-Braves.
Gwinnett scored twice in the eighth against Cory Wade to cut the deficit to 13-8, but would get no closer. Gotay tripled to score Jose Constanza and later scored as J.C. Boscan grounded into a double play. Both runs were unearned to Wade. Danny Farquhar worked 2.0 scoreless innings to finish the game for the Yankees.
Durango led Gwinnett hitters with a 3-for-5 night, scoring once and driving in one RBI. Gartrell connected on his 14th home run, finishing 1-for-3 with three RBIs. Gotay added a 2-for-4 night including a double, triple and one RBI.
Russo finished 4-for-6 to lead all hitters. Laird went 3-for-4 with his ninth homer and four RBIs and Garner went 2-for-4 with his fifth homer and four RBIs as well for the Yankees.
Bring your ball and glove for a pre-game catch on the outfield grass at Coolray Field on Family Sunday. All kids 12 and under will get to run the bases following the game. The Gwinnett Braves will also observe Cancer Awareness night as they recognize organizations that bring awareness to cancer prevention and detection or raise funds for cancer research.
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