Baseball: Ugly 9th Inning Sends Monsters to 9-1 Defeat

Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters

BURLINGTON — The Hudson Valley Renegades scored eight runs in the top of the ninth inning to snap a 1-1 tie and defeat the Vermont Lake Monsters 9-1 in New York-Penn League action Thursday night at historic Centennial Field.

After Jeferson Mejia recorded a strikeout to open the ninth, the Renegades loaded the bases on a single, walk and single to chase Mejia from the game. Jose Mora came on in relief and walked each of the next four batters to force home four runs. Two of those walks came after Cristhian Pedroza and Jonathan Embry had both fouled off four straight 3-2 pitches, while the last came on a 3-2 pitch to Jordyn Muffley.

Hudson Valley added four more runs in the inning on a Jacson McGowan two-run double and Brito two-run single off Calvin Coker, who snapped the streak of 10 straight Renegades to reach base safely with a pair of groundouts to end the inning. The eight runs were the most in an inning for a Vermont opponent at Centennial Field since June 23, 2015 when Aberdeen scored eight times in the sixth inning.

The game had been scoreless until the fifth when Hudson Valley jumped out to a 1-0 lead with a run in the top of the fifth, but the Lake Monsters quickly tied the game on a one-out Danny Bautista RBI single to score Jorge Gordon in the bottom of the inning.

Renegades starter Nathan Wiles, Tampa Bay’s eighth-round pick in 2019 draft out of Oklahoma, tossed two scoreless innings before reliever Zach Trageton was charged with one run on seven hits with no walks and eight strikeouts over six innings to earn the victory.

Lake Monsters starter Michael Murray allowed one run on five hits with three strikeouts over 4 2/3 innings (61 pitches, 44 strikes). Bautista and Jordan Diaz both had two hits for Vermont (4-3), which has dropped three of its last four after starting the season with three straight victories.

The Lake Monsters head to Tri-City for a three-game series against the ValleyCats beginning Friday at 7:05 pm. Vermont returns home to Centennial on Tuesday for the start of a six-game homestand through June 30th.