Flying Squirrels dive into series opening win 5-1 in Reading

The following comes directly from the Richmond Flying Squirrels:

Reading, PA – Flying Squirrels right-hander Sam Coonrod kept the league’s best offense under wraps on Tuesday, leading Richmond (51-70) to a 5-1 win over Reading (78-41) at FirstEnergy Stadium. Coonrod tossed six innings and allowed just one run to earn the victory. Tyler Horan and Ryder Jones both homered to lift the offense and take the series opener. The Squirrels continue their brief three-game series in Reading, PA on Wednesday night at 7:05 PM.


Starting pitching was on display in the usually hitter-friendly confines of FirstEnergy Stadium on Tuesday night. The Squirrels Sam Coonrod matched zeroes with Reading’s Tom Eshelman through the first three innings. Coonrod faced one over the minimum in the first three frames, while Esheleman racked up three early strikeouts.


Reading struck first in the home half of the fourth the only way they know how. Dylan Cozens launched his 34th homer of the season, a high fly over the left field wall to give Reading a 1-0 lead. Cozens pulled to within one home run shy of his teammate and the current home run leader Rhys Hoskins. Both hitters are approaching the Reading franchise record of 38 homers in a season.


The Squirrels returned fire in the fifth as Tyler Horan ripped a line drive over the wall in right field. Steve Lerud followed with a double and Christian Arroyo delivered a sacrifice fly to give Richmond a 2-1 lead. Ryder Jones made it a 3-1 affair in the third, launching his 13th home run of theseason.


Esheleman (4-3) suffered the loss and lasted six innings in the outing. The righty struck out seven and allowed the three runs on seven hits. He used 95 pitches before being relieved by right-hander Carlos Rivero. Rivero tossed two scoreless innings and struck out three to keep the game, 3-1.


Coonrod quickly shook off the Cozens home run and worked his way deep into the contest. Coonrod pitched around a two-out error in the sixth and returned to start the seventh inning. He quickly walked Rhys Hoskins and was removed for relieverCarlos Alvarado. Alvarado was able to navigate through the next three hitters, stranding Hoskins at second base.


Rodolfo Martinez entered for Richmond and pitched a scoreless eighth inning while Preston Claiborne finished the game by striking out the side in the ninth. The Squirrels added a pair of insurance runs in the top of the ninth, loading the bases against reliever Jessen Therrien. With the bases loaded, Bednar delivered atwo-run single into center field for a 5-1 lead. With the win the Squirrels improved to 6-5 against Reading.

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