Baseball: Three Run 7th Pushes Monsters Past Tigers

Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters

BURLINGTON — The Vermont Lake Monsters rallied late for the second straight night as they scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning for a come-from-behind 4-3 victory over the Connecticut Tigers in New York-Penn League action Thursday night at historic Centennial Field.

Trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the seventh, Vermont’s Yerdel Vargas (just into the game at shortstop in the top of the inning) cranked a two-run homer to leftcenter to tie the game. It marked the fifth straight game that Vermont has hit a home run, the team’s longest streak since hitting a homer in six straight games August 24-29, 1999.

After the game-tying home run, Jordan Diaz reached on an error and advanced to third on a Kyle McCann single before Danny Bautista gave Vermont the lead with a sacrifice fly to deep centerfield.

Vermont, which had rallied from a 4-0 deficit for a 6-4 win on Wednesday, closed out the victory on Thursday as Jorge Martinez (2-1) picked up the win and Jeferson Mejia had a perfect ninth for his first save of the season.

Lake Monsters starter Richard Morban allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits with one walk and four strikeouts over five innings. He gave up a sacrifice fly to Jake Holton in fourth inning and an unearned run in the fifth on a throwing error by rightfielder Danny Bautista.

Vermont had just one hit over the first five innings before stringing together three singles in the bottom of the sixth, including a Lawrence Butler RBI single to center to cut Tigers lead to 2-1. 17th-round pick Vince Coletti out of Florida Atlantic loaded the bases in the top of the sixth inning in his Lake Monsters debut, but worked out of the jam with back-to-back strikeouts and a fielder’s choice.

The homestand continues as Vermont (7-6) hosts the Staten Island Yankees for a three-game series beginning 7:05 pm Friday. The first 1,000 fans thru the gates at 6:00 pm will receive a free Lake Monsters football jersey.