Thunder Win Streak Over, Sens Win 6-5
TRENTON, NJ - The Trenton Thunder (65-58) snap their six-game win streak with a 6-5 loss at the hands of the Harrisburg Senators Thursday night at ARM & HAMMER Park.
The Thunder, who were also looking for their 9th straight home win and third straight home series sweep, erased an early 4-0 deficit to draw even in the 5th inning but couldn't hold off a pair of late Harrisburg runs.
Trailing 6-4 in the 8th, the Thunder scored a run to draw back within a run of the Senators. Trenton then loaded the bases with two outs for first-baseman Kyle Roller. Roller got ahead in the count 2-1 on Harrisburg's closer, Aaron Barrett, but took a fastball for strike two. On the ensuing 2-2 pitch, he chased a ball in the dirt and was tagged out by catcher Sandy Leon for strike three and out three.
Trenton then had a lead-off single by Jose Pirela in the bottom of the 9th trailing by a run. After a sacrifice bunt by Casey Stevenson advanced Pirela to scoring position with one out, Yeral Sanchez and Mason Williams struck out to end the ballgame.
Williams, the No. 1 prospect in the New York Yankees system, made his Thunder debut Thursday. He was added to the roster earlier in the day, pinch-ran for Saxon Butler in the 8th inning and came around to score. In the 9th inning, however Barrett struck him out on three pitches.
Switch-pitcher Pat Venditte made his 2013 Thunder debut and picked up the loss in two innings of work. Venditte, recovering from 2012 right labrum surgery, allowed a run on three hits to the nine batters he faced. He mixed sides by facing five batters right-handed and four batters left-handed. Thursday night was the first Double-A appearance for Venditte since September 4, 2011 at New Britain in which he allowed seven runs on 10 hits in 3.0 innings.
Trenton completes a stretch of 27 games in which 19 were at home with a 17-10 record including a 13-6 mark at home. With the loss and a New Hampshire win, Trenton's lead in the Wild Card standings now sits at 5.5 games over the Fisher Cats with 19 games to play in the regular season.
The Thunder hit the road to Manchester, N.H. to begin a three-game series and six-game road trip against the Harrisburg Senators Thursday at 7:05 p.m. Radio coverage on 91.3 FM (WTSR) and streaming online begins at 6:50 p.m.
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