Rayados Comeback Falls Short in Extras
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - The Winston-Salem Rayados overcame a 7-0 deficit to force extra innings, but ultimately fell to the Lynchburg Hillcats 12-9 in 11 innings on Sunday afternoon at BB&T Ballpark. For the third time this season, the Dash wore their "Winston-Salem Rayados" jerseys as part of Minor League Baseball's "Copa de la Diversión" initiative.
With the game tied at nine entering the 11th inning, Lynchburg (3-1, 35-36) plated three runs against Winston-Salem (1-3, 39-29) reliever Jake Elliott (3-2). To lead off the inning, Oscar Gonzalez singled into left field to move placed runner Nolan Jones up to third base. Elliott then threw a wild pitch, allowing Jones to score to make it 10-9.
Following the wild pitch, Will Benson lined a single into right field to put runners at the corners. Benson then stole second base to put two runners in scoring position. Then, Gavin Collins hit a fly ball into center field deep enough to score Gonzalez on a sacrifice fly. But, the throw from center fielder Tyler Frost was errant, allowing Benson as well to score and push the lead to 12-9.
Needing three runs to extend the game, the Rayados were retired in order in the bottom of the 11th. Riley Echols earned his second save of the season by pitching a perfect 11th.
Entering extra innings, the two teams were tied at seven. In the top of the 10th, the Hillcats plated two runs against Rayados reliever Andrew Perez. With Collins placed at second, Mitch Reeves walked and Jonathan Laureano reached on a bunt single to load the bases. Then, Jodd Carter hit a ground ball off the glove of Perez that was misplayed by Rayados second baseman Mitch Roman, the error allowed both Collins and Reeves to score to make it 9-7.
However, Winston-Salem tied it up in the bottom of the 10th. With Craig Dedelow placed at second, JJ Muno roped a triple into the left field corner to score Dedelow. Following a Yeyson Yrizarri flyout, Carlos Perez grounded out to short, allowing Muno to score to tie the game at nine.
Prior to the late-inning drama, Rayados starter Jorgan Cavanerio held Lynchburg scoreless in the first four innings, but the Hillcats broke the game open in the fifth. Following a Tyler Friis popout to lead off the inning, Tyler Freeman and Nolan Jones drew back-to-back walks. Gonzalez then flew out, but Benson drew a two-out walk to load the bases.
With the bases loaded, Collins bounced a single through the middle to score Freeman and Jones and make it 2-0. To continue the rally, Reeves blooped a single that scored Benson to push the lead to three runs. Following the hit by Reeves, Cavanerio was replaced by Jose Nin.
Upon entering the game, Nin promptly walked Laureano to load the bases. With Carter at the plate, Nin threw a wild pitch, allowing Collins to score to make it 4-0. Later in the at-bat, Carter crushed a three-run homer to left field that increased the Lynchburg lead to seven.
After Hillcats starter Juan Hillman held the Rayados scoreless for six innings, Winston-Salem broke through in the seventh against Aaron Pinto. Zach Remillard led off the frame by lacing a single into center field. Thanks to a groundout by Dedelow and flyout by Muno, Remillard advanced to third. With Yrizarri at the plate, Pinto threw a wild pitch which allowed Remillard to score the first run of the contest for the Rayados.
The Rayados continued the comeback effort in the bottom of the eighth. Frost started the frame by looping a single into left field before moving to second as Roman drew a walk. Then, Steele Walker reached on an error by shortstop Tyler Freeman to load the bases.
With the bases loaded, Pinto was replaced by right-hander Evan Mitchell. The first hitter to face Mitchell was Jameson Fisher, who bounced a single through the right side to score Frost and Roman and make it 7-3. Remillard then stepped in and crushed a three-run homer to left field, cutting the Hillcats lead to one.
Trailing 7-6, the Rayados tied it up in the bottom of the ninth. Frost led off the frame with an opposite-field home run to left field, tying the game at seven. Frost finished the day 3-for-6 with a home run and RBI.
Winston-Salem begins a three-game set with Myrtle Beach at 7 p.m. Monday night. Right-hander Jonathan Stiever is set to make his debut at the High-A level for the Dash, while the starter for the Pelicans is to be announced. Pregame coverage begins at 6:45 p.m., and fans can catch all of the action on wsdash.com/broadcast, MiLB.tv and the TuneIn Radio App.
The Dash's three-game series against Myrtle Beach begins with a Free Food Monday, and continues with $2 tacos on Tuesday and throwback Warthogs jerseys for Wednesday. For tickets and more information, call the Dash at (336) 714-2287 or visit wsdash.com.
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