BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – The Bridgeport Bluefish defeated the Newark Bears 2-1 in 10 innings on Monday night at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Newark and Bridgeport battled in a tightly contested game throughout with strong pitching performances by both starters. Shane Youman faced the minimum through his first three innings, recording a pair of strikeouts and inducing an inning-ending double play. Newark turned a pair of double plays with Bridgeport recoding three on the night. Denny Stark scattered a pair of hits to start the game, but was able to retire the side and worked a perfect second frame.
The Bears jumped on top in the third as James Cooper reached on an error to start the inning. Randy Gress successfully sacrificed him over and two batters later, Kennard Jones deposited a two-out RBI double into the left field corner to bring in Cooper and it was 1-0 Newark. Bridgeport evened the score in the home fourth. Tike Redman, Hiram Bocachica and Steve Moss reached on a pair of walks and single to load the bases. Josh Phelps flied out deep to center and scored Redman on the sacrifice to tie the game at 1.
The score remained the same as Youman gave up just three hits over his last three frames, while striking out four more batters and stranding four. Stark also kept the game close by allowing a pair of hits with three strikeouts and two men left on base. In the tenth, Bridgeport pushed ahead for good as Redman ripped a leadoff double into the right field corner. A sacrifice bunt and an intentional pass put runners on the corners for Phelps, who put a Greg Reinhard pitch through the left side to score Redman for the win.
Bartolome Fortunato (1-0) got the win, tossing a scoreless tenth inning with a walk. Reinhard (3-4) suffered the loss, surrendering two hits in the tenth inning. Chris Rivera and Antonio Alfonseca combined for two scoreless innings in relief for the ‘Fish.
The Bears and Bluefish play game two of the four-game series on Tuesday. Game time is set for 7:05 p.m. at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard. Fans can tune into all the action at www.newarkbears.com as David Greenwald provides the play-by-play.
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