Baseball: Four-run First and Bullpen Lead Vermont to 4-1 Win

Courtesy Vermont Lake Monsters

BURLINGTON — The Lake Monsters scored four runs in the bottom of the first inning and the bullpen allowed just one hit over seven scoreless innings as Vermont defeated the Hudson Valley Renegades 4-1 in New York-Penn League action at historic Centennial Field.

The Renegades got on the board in the top of the first inning as Michael Russell lined a one-out triple to leftfield off Vermont starter Bubba Derby and then scored on a dropped line drive to leftfielder Seth Brown. Derby was able to make that an unearned run as he struckout the next two batters to end the inning and Vermont was able to get him four runs in the bottom of the first.

The Lake Monsters loaded the bases as Skye Bolt walked, Richie Martin lined a single to right and Trace Loehr reached on a throwing error. Brown then tied the game with an RBI groundout and Chris Iriart gave Vermont a 2-1 lead with an RBI double (16th of season) to left. Brett Siddall followed with another RBI groundout to score Loehr and Iriart scored the fourth run of the inning on a passed ball by catcher Taylor Hawkins.

Derby worked around two hits and a walk in a scoreless second inning, then came out of the game after giving up a leadoff double and walk in the third inning. Derby finished his season with a 0.78 ERA, allowing four runs (three earned) on 19 hits with 10 walks and 45 strikeouts over 34 2/3 innings in 12 appearances for the Lake Monsters (had a 0.39 ERA at Centennial with just one earned run on 10 hits and 29 strikeouts over 23 innings).

Reliever John Gorman (2-2) worked out of two-on, no-out jam in the third with two strikeouts and a groundout and then tossed a 1-2-3 fourth inning with one strikeout to earn the victory. Kyle Friedrichs came on in the fifth inning and tossed three scoreless innings on one hit, a bunt single to the first batter he faced, with one walk and three strikeouts. Andrew Tomasovich finished off the seven scoreless relief innings with two hitless innings with one walk and four strikeouts for his first save as the four Vermont pitchers combined for 14 strikeouts.

Russell was 2-for-3 with a double and a triple for Hudson Valley (37-35), while Angel Yepez (5-4) allowed four runs (one earned) on four hits with two walks and six strikeouts over five innings to take the loss. Reliever Tyler Brashears allowed one hit with one strikeout in three scoreless innings.

Vermont (31-40) has now won 11 of its last 15 games at Centennial Field to even its home record at 19-19 with one game remaining at Centennial  this season when the Lake Monsters host Hudson Valley on Friday night beginning at 7:05 pm. The game can be heard on AM 960 the Zone. The first 1,000 fans will receive a free commemorative Lake Monsters cup.

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