The Aquasox used the wind to their advantage, as Welington Dotel hit a two-run home run to right field in the second inning and Ben Billingsley hit a lead-off home run over the right field wall in the third inning. Both homers seemed to be carried by the strong wind, which was blowing out toward right field.
“Those were normal fly balls,” manager Greg Riddoch said.
Aquasox’ starting pitcher Taylor Lewis, who recorded his third win of the season, had a solid performance on the mound, pitching six innings, giving up three runs and four hits.
Left-hander Pedro Hernandez (0-2), who got the start for the Ems, retired the side in the first inning but gave up two runs and three hits in both the second and third innings. Hernandez lasted four innings, giving up seven hits and four runs
Lewis allowed no runs and no hits through three innings, but ran into trouble in the fourth, as the Ems scored three runs and had four hits. Designated hitter Jason Hagerty got things started as he recorded he Ems’ first hit on a broken-bat single to shallow center field to lead off the fourth inning. Vincent Belnome then followed with a single to right field. In the next at-bat, Nate Freiman, who has been struggling at the plate and came into the game batting .256, smashed a three-run home run over the left field wall to make the score 4-3.
“It’s nice to get that first one out of the way,” Freiman said. “Home runs are nice when they help you win, unfortunately, that didn’t happen.”
The Ems’ would never get closer.
In the fifth inning, Ems’ right-hander Tyson Bagley, who relieved Hernandez, gave up three hits and two costly runs that put the Aquasox’s ahead 6-3. The Aquasox scored once more in the top of the seventh to extend their lead, 7-3
“If we’d have had a shutdown inning, it would have made a difference,” Riddoch said.
The Ems threatened in the bottom of the seventh when the Aquasox brought in right-hander Brandon Reid to relieve Lewis. Reid lasted just a 1/3 of an inning after giving up a walk, two hits and an RBI single to Brayden Drake that scored Chris Tremblay from third.
The Ems finished the game with eight hits, while the Aquasox finished with 11.
“They got ten hits in five innings,” Riddoch said. “That tells the story right there.”
The loss drops the Ems’ record to 4-6, as the Aquasox evened their record to 5-5.
“The great thing about professional baseball is that tonight’s over and [there’s] another one tomorrow,” Freiman said.