Bowie, Md. – The Baysox six game winning streak and nine game home winning streak ended Tuesday night as Erie beat Bowie 9-4. With a Richmond win and Baysox loss, the team failed to clinch a playoff spot Tuesday.
Baltimore Orioles infielder Wilson Betemit, who was playing in Bowie on a Major League rehab assignment, went 0-4 with a strikeout.
The nine runs allowed by the Baysox were the most since a 9-4 loss to Altoona August 9. The Baysox bullpen experienced some uncharacteristic struggles, allowing five runs in the seventh and eighth innings.
“I like what we have been doing on the mound, but things just got a little out of hand tonight,” said Manager Gary Kendall. “[Jason] Gurka looked like he couldn’t really command the ball tonight and things escalated with [Robert] Hinton. Some balls started falling and hitting the gaps.”
The Baysox took the lead in the bottom of the first inning against Erie starter Jared Wesson. Shortstop Jonathan Schoop drew a lead off walk and scored when designated hitter Ty Kelly doubled to right field to give the Baysox a 1-0 lead.
Bowie extended the lead in the bottom of the second inning. Catcher Caleb Joseph hit a lead off home run to left-center field and left fielder Josh Barfield followed with a walk. With two outs, Barfield scored when Schoop doubled to center field to give the Baysox a 3-0 lead.
Erie stormed back into the lead in the top of the fourth inning against Baysox starter Mike Wright. After three scoreless innings to start the game, Wright ran into some trouble in the fourth. He surrendered back-to-back singles to start the inning and Jordan Lennerton followed with an RBI double to right field. With two on and no outs, Avisail Garcia then hit a three run home run to left field to give the SeaWolves a 4-3 lead. Wright allowed two more batters to reach base in the inning, but got help from a double play to get out of the inning.
“I just started trying to do too much, especially when I got guys on,” Wright said. “I was trying a little too hard to strike guys out or get a huge play and try to make a perfect pitch instead of letting my defense work like they were the three innings before and the two innings after.”
The Baysox tied the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. Joseph and Barfield drew back-to-back walks to start the inning and Joseph moved to third base on a flyout by third baseman Zelous Wheeler. Joseph scored when center fielder Jai Miller singled to right field to tie the game 4-4.
The SeaWolves fought back into the lead in the top of the seventh inning against Baysox reliever Jason Gurka. Erie loaded the bases with no outs and Niuman Romero plated a run with a sac fly to give Erie a 5-4 lead. The defense helped Gurka get out of the inning and limit the damage as Miller made a great catch at the wall in center field for the second out and Joseph threw out a runner attempting to steal third base for the final out.
Erie added several insurance runs in the top of the eighth inning. Jordan Lennerton drew a lead off walk and Gurka was then replaced on the mound by Baysox reliever Robert Hinton. The next two batters of the inning reached base before Brandon Douglas hit a two-RBI double to left field. James McCann followed with a single to right field that scored another run and Jamie Johnson kept the inning going with an RBI single to right field that gave Erie a 9-4 lead.
Wright pitched six innings and allowed four runs on seven hits while striking out four batters and walking two in a no decision. Gurka pitched one inning and allowed two runs on two hits while walking two batters in the loss. Hinton pitched the eighth inning and allowed three runs (two earned) on four hits while striking out one batter. Andy Loomis pitched a scoreless ninth inning and allowed one hit.
Erie reliever David Kopp earned the win for Erie, pitching two scoreless innings where he struck out two batters, walked one and did not allow a hit.
RHP Eddie Gamboa (7-4, 3.03) takes the mound for the Baysox tomorrow as the team plays the final game in a four game home series with the Erie SeaWolves beginning at 7:05 p.m. He will be opposed by RHP Patrick Cooper (3-9, 4.78).
The Baysox are home through Thursday, August 30 for the final eight game homestand of the season. The Regular Season Home Finale is Thursday, August 30 at 7:05 p.m. The team finishes the season on the road in Harrisburg.