September 26, 2012 - Atlantic League (AtL) - Lancaster Barnstormers
The Lancaster Barnstormers blasted four home runs on Wednesday evening in a 10-4 victory over the York Revolution, but it may have been three balls that did not get through the infield cleanly that proved to be York's undoing in Game One of the Freedom Division Championship Series at Clipper Magazine Stadium.
Blake Gailen belted the first homer for the Barnstormers while Travis Denker added a pair of solo shots and Fehlandt Lentini launched a two-run blast down the left field line.
The Lancaster win, though, was set up by the first three batters of the fifth inning.
After York had tied the game, 4-4, on a two-out RBI single by Johan Limonta in the top of the fifth, Kody Kirkland reached on a single to the hole at shortstop. Gilberto Mejia, simply trying to advance Kirkland, pushed a bunt up the first base line that died on the chalk. Adam Godwin also pushed a bunt up the first base line. It was fielded by Limonta, who missed the tag and could not get off a throw as Lancaster loaded the bases with nobody out.
Gailen put the Barnstormers ahead to stay with a two-run single up the middle. Tommy Everidge added to the lead with a sacrifice fly to right, and Lentini followed with his line drive homer down the left field line for a 9-4 lead. One out later, Denker ended a rough start for Ryan Feierabend (0-1) with his second opposite field homer of the night.
The Barnstormers jumped ahead, 2-0, in the first on an infield single by Adam Godwin and Gailen's two-run bomb over the picnic tents.
York and Lancaster exchanged homers in the second inning as league slugging champ Chris Nowak took Dwayne Pollok (1-0) onto the hillside in left, and Denker planted his first off the tents in right.
The Revolution found a different way to score in the third. Scott Grimes led off with a single to left and raced to third as Brandon Haveman snuck a grounder under Kirkland's glove in the shortstop hole. Michael Hernandez brought York to within one with a sacrifice fly, and Andres Perez later singled home Haveman to tie the game.
Everidge gave Lancaster its second advantage with a bad hop single that deflected off Nowak, the third baseman, into left center to score Gailen in the third.
John Halama (13-9 in the regular season) will square off against Corey Thurman (14-3) in Game Two on Thursday evening. Fans may tune into 1390-AM, WLAN; 1600-AM, WPDC; 1390wlan.com or the I Heart Radio cell phone app beginning at 6:45.
NOTES: Denker was the first Barnstormer to hit two home runs in a playoff game...The four homers by the team was also a playoff record...There were 22 strikeouts in the game...Lancaster's bullpen allowed only one walk in four innings of work...Five relievers were used...The Barnstormers managed only one hit, a single by Kirkland, off the York relief corps in 3 1/3 innings.