SWB Game Notes
SCRANTON/WILKES-BARRE RAILRIDERS (76-65; 0-1) @ DURHAM BULLS (75-64; 1-0)
RHP Michael King (3-1, 4.18) vs. LHP Josh Fleming (1-3, 5.14)
| Game 2 I.L. Semifinals | Durham Bulls Athletic Park | Durham, NC | September 6, 2019 | First Pitch 6:05 p.m. |
DURHAM, NC (September 4, 2019) -- A close game through the middle innings on a pre-hurricane evening at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, the Durham Bulls took Game One of the International League Semifinals Wednesday night from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, 9-3.
The RailRiders fell behind early as the first three Durham batters of the night reached against starting pitcher Brian Keller. A run was home in the bottom of the first inning before Keller settled in, retiring the next 12 batters he faced in order. That took the game into the fifth inning, by which time the RailRiders had struck for a game-tying run.
Jose De Leon got the ball at the outset for Durham and posted three scoreless innings to begin things while working around three hits. On one of his first offerings of the fourth inning to Erik Kratz, he allowed the veteran catcher to drill a ball to right-centerfield for a solo home run. Kratz proved to be the hero in Tuesday's improbable 14-13 comeback victory over the Syracuse Mets in the one-game playoff to decide the I.L. North Division, and his swing got the RailRiders back on even footing.
From there, the Bulls scored a go-ahead run in the fifth inning when Kevin Padlo belted a homer over the 32-foot high Blue Monster wall in left-centerfield to make it 2-1. The following frame, Keller allowed a pair of walks with one out before giving way to Kaleb Ort. Jason Coats was the first man to greet the righty and he scorched a home run to make it 5-1, en route to a 9-3 win and a 1-0 series lead for the Bulls.
THEY DID WHAT?: The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre completed the Mircale on Montage Mountain Tuesday afternoon in a one-game playoff against the Syracuse Mets to determine the International League North Division title. Trailing 7-1 entering the bottom of the seventh inning and having just one hit to that point of starting pitcher Ervin Santana, the RailRiders scored five times to make it a 7-6 defict. When Syracuse responded with six runs in the top of the eighth inning it seemed as if the RailRiders' fate was sealed, but instead they plated a season-best eight runs in an inning and grabbed a 14-13 lead en route to a win as Ben Heller slammed the door on the victory in the ninth with a 1-2-3 frame.
HELLO, MY NAME IS: The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders franchise record for players used in games over the course of a regular season entering 2019 was 75 by the 2015 SWB RailRiders. This season, SWB used 46 pitchers and 36 position players, totaling 82 players in 2019. The initial postseason roster released Wednesday afternoon by the RailRiders includes two players in INF Angel Aguilar and RHP Greg Weissert who have not yet appeared in a game for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this season. If they do, it would mark each player's Triple-A debut.
RECORDS WERE MEANT TO BE BROKEN: With the final day of the 2019 regular season upon us, here's a look at the major records the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders offense has broken this season:
Most HR in a season by a lefty: Mike Ford, 23 HR Old record -- Eric Valent, 21 HR (2001)
Most HR in a month: Logan Morrison, 11 HR (June) Old record -- 2x, Last: W. Magee, Jr., 10 HR (July 1998)
Most R scored in a season: 786 R Old record -- 746 R (1998)
Most RBI in season: 741 RBI Old record -- 695 RBI (1998)
Most HR in a season: 212 HR Old record -- 164 HR (1998)
Most HR at home in a season: 109 HR Old record -- 61 HR (2008)
Grand Slams, season: 8 GS Old record -- 5 GS (2x, Last: 2005)
Most Extra-Base Hits in a season: 530 XBH Old record -- 488 XBH (1998)
Total Bases in a season: 2,282 Total Bases Old record -- 2,190 Total Bases (1998)
Highest slugging percentage: .484 SLG Old record -- .449 SLG (1998)
Highest on-base percentage: 351 OBP Old record -- .349 OBP (1997)
STORMING TO THE FINISH: INF Gosuke Katoh finished the season on an incredibly hot stretch for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders. In the final 27G of the regular season once returning from the Double-A Trenton Thunder, the infielder batted 27-for-88 (.307 AVG), 3 2B, 4 HR, 17 RBI, 25 BB (.460 OBP) and 3-for-4 SB. Hotter still was the final two weeks in which Katoh reached safely in 37-of-his-last-71 plate appearances (.521 OBP), going 17-for-51 (.333 AVG) with 20 BB. His 25-game on-base streak to end the season tied Mike Ford for the second longest on-base streak by a RailRiders batter this season, and winds up as T-2nd for the longest streak among active players in the I.L. (Ryan LaMarre, GWN -- 35 games).
MAKING MOVES: Following a year in which they made 275 roster moves total (1.99 moves/game) during the regular season, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders finished the regular season by making 336 roster moves -- surpassing the 2015 season record of 305 moves in a year. The team is averaged 2.38 moves/game this season.
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International League Stories from September 6, 2019
- Stripers Stay Alive with 10-6 Win in Columbus - Gwinnett Stripers
- Two-run homers by Lukes, Cronenworth lift Bulls to Game 2 victory - Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders
- Fleming Leads Bulls to Game 2 Victory - Durham Bulls
- Matt Parrott Named IL Sports Turf Manager of the Year for Third Straight Season - Charlotte Knights
- SWB Game Notes - Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders
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