The following comes directly from the Richmond Flying Squirrels:
RVA – The Hartford Yard Goats scored seven unanswered runs to defeat Richmond (29-41) 7-3 on Wednesday night at The Diamond. The Squirrels plated three runs over the first three innings, but Hartford (31-38) starting pitcher Parker French straightened up and earned the win by lasting six inning. It was the third win in four starts for French over the Squirrels. Richmond out-hit Hartford 10-9 and received three hits from Jerry Sands in the defeat. The rubber match of the three-game series is up for grabs on Thursday at 6:35 p.m.
Cory Taylor took the ball for Richmond in his 12th start of the season and fourth against Hartford. Taylor was sharp at the outset, retiring the first four batters of the game. The righty faced the minimum through the first two innings and used 51 pitches in the first three scoreless frames.
Richmond provided Taylor a 2-0 lead in the second inning, thanks to the return of outfielder Daniel Carbonell. Jerry Sands opened the second inning with a base hit off the left field wall. The ball reached the wall so quickly, it forced Sands to settle for a single. Brandon Bednar then grounded into a double play for the first two outs of the inning. After Dylan Davis walked, Carbonell launched a two-run homer to deep left field. It was the first at bat back for Carbonell since his demotion to Single-A in 2015.
Sands connected on a more traditional base hit his next time up in the third inning, providing a 3-0 edge. Miguel Gomez reached on a force out and advanced to second on a passed ball. Sands then bounced a base hit to center field for his seventh RBI of the year.
Taylor encountered trouble upon reaching the fourth. Hartford loaded the bases on a pair of hits and a walk with no one out. Josh Fuentes then rolled a broken bat grounder to short, too weak for the Squirrels to turn a double play. The grounded scored a run and another near double play ball scored the Yard Goats second run of the game to pull within one run, 3-2. Taylor escaped the inning, but used 70 pitches in the first four stanzas.
The ‘Goats tied the game 3-3 in the fifth inning. Omar Carrizales singled to lead things off for Hartford. Taylor then picked up a pair of line outs, nearly able to strand the runner. Drew Weeks drove a ball into the right center field gap, scoring Carrizales from first to tie the game. Taylor finished the fifth inning for his final inning of work. He walked four and struck out one in the outing while allowing three runs. Taylor received a no-decision, leaving with the game ties.
Yordy Carbera relieved Taylor to begin the sixth inning and was in immediate trouble. Cabrera hit the first two batters he faced and a passed ball advanced runners into scoring position with one out. Juan Ciriaco moved Hartford ahead for the first time in the contest on a sacrifice fly to right field. Cabrera (0-1) suffered the loss and tossed one inning of relief.
French (6-6) lasted through six innings, long enough to earn the win. The righty picked up his third win over Richmond by allowing three runs on seven hits. He struck out one and walked three.
The Yard Goats added another two runs against reliever Carlos Alvarado in the seventh. Alvarado hung an off speed pitch that Jan Vazquez drilled deep over the right field wall.
‘Goats RHP Matt Pierpont tossed the final three innings to finish the game and earn his first save of the year.
The Flying Squirrels continue a six-game homestand on Thursday at 6:35 p.m. LHP Matt Gage (3-4, 3.36) is scheduled to make the start against Hartford RHP Luis Niebla (1-3, 7.92 ).