CHARLESTON, WV – With two outs in the ninth and a three run lead, it looked like the BlueClaws were on their way to a comfortable 4-1 win.
Looks can be deceiving.
West Virginia rallied against two of the BlueClaws better relievers for a big 5-4 comeback win Sunday afternoon.
Luke Wertz (4-3) ran into trouble in the ninth after getting two quick outs. Jose Hernandez and Ramon Cabrera singled, Rogelio Noris walked, and Elevys Gonzalez drove in two with a base hit. Bengie Gonzalez then hit a walk-off double off Claws closer Ebelin Lugo to clinch the win for the Power.
West Virginia (21-22) has now won six of their last seven and are 4 1/2 games back of the Claws (25-17)in the Northern Division.
Josh Zeid threw seven fantastic innings for the BlueClaws. He limited West Virginia to just three hits, and struck out nine, but got the no decision despite pitching well.
The BlueClaws scored their first run in the third. With two outs Jiwan James bunted his way on base, stole his second base of the day and 30th of the season, and scored on a Keoni Ruth RBI single.
The first batter of the fifth tied the game for the Power with one swing, the only real mistake Zeid made on the day. Designated hitter Jose Hernandez hit his tenth home run of the season onto the street behind the ballpark to even things up at 1-1.
Kyle Lafrenz singled to start the eighth inning, and with one out Jiwan James picked up a base hit. Keoni Ruth then reached on an error, as teh ball squirted through the legs of Elevys Gonzalez to give Lakewood a 2-1 lead.
Leandro Castro followed up the error with an RBI single to extend the lead to 3-1, and a Stephen Batts RBI double in the ninth gave the Claws a three-run cushion.
Monday at 7:05 pm RHP Colby Shreve (6-5, 3.59) goes up against one of the Power’s better pitchers RHP Phillip Irwin (5-1, 2.39).
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