Class-A: Lowell Spinners Split Doubleheader With Tri-City ValleyCats
In the first game of Monday’s afternoon doubleheader, the Tri-City ValleyCats squeezed past the Lowell Spinners 2-1 in eight innings.
With a game separating both teams for the lead in the NY Penn League Stedler Division, the first place Spinners sent Venezuelan native Darwinzon Hernandez to the mound against ValleyCats starter Dustin Hunt.
In the top of the first, Hunt worked around a two-out single and struck out Ryan Scott to end the inning. Then in the top of the second, the Spinners took an early 1-0 lead after Isaias Lucena singled home Carlos Tovar, who reached base earlier in the inning on a two-out single.
As for Hernandez, the 19-year old left hander who entered the game having won his last two starts and lasting at least five innings, retired the first four batters he faced before giving up a ground ball single off the bat of ValleyCats Ronnie Dawson. Next batter Brauly Mejia doubled scoring Dawson from first base to tie the game at 1-1. Hernandez then retired the next two batters to get out of the jam.
In the third inning, Hernandez struck out the first batter, walked a batter and then after catcher Isaias Lucena threw out the runner trying to steal second, Hernandez struck out Ryne Birk to end the inning.
The game remained scoreless until the bottom of the eighth inning when Chuckie Romero hit an RBI Double to left field scoring Marcos Almonte to walk off the Spinners 2-1.
In Game two, both teams were kept scoreless until the Spinners exploded for six runs in the top of the fourth inning highlighted by two-RBI singles from Bobby Dalbec and Carlos Tovar, and after catcher Jhon Nunez tripled, Andy Perez hit a line drive single to left field scoring Nunez and Spencer Johnson to put Lowell up 6-0.
Lowell added an insurance run in the top of the seventh and the Spinners bullpen held on to secure the 7-3 win.
With the victory the Spinners (25-18) extended their lead to two games over the ValleyCats (23-20), who fell into a second place tie with the Connecticut Tigers.
Official Game Photo Gallery by Gabe Rodriguez/Legends On Deck