Pelicans rally late to sweep past Dash in doubleheader

pel-MonasterioAndruw Monasterio hit a walk-off to help the Pelicans win game one of Wednesday’s doubleheader 4-3 before Myrtle Beach won the finale 3-2 to sweep the twin bill from the Winston-Salem Dash at TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

In game number one, Winston-Salem (14-33) kicked off the scoring with a two-run first inning off Myrtle Beach (25-22) starter Justin Steele (2-3). Danny Mendick and Luis Basabe started the frame with back-to-back base hits, and both runners would eventually advance to second and third on a wild pitch. Trey Michalczewski drove in both with a two-run single to left field to give the Dash the 2-0 advantage.

The Dash would extend their lead in the second. Johan Cruz started the frame with a base hit, and then stole second base to get into scoring position with nobody out. Two batters later, Jake Fincher notched an infield single that scored Cruz to extend the Dash advantage to 3-0.

Myrtle Beach would rally for a pair of runs in the fifth, as the Pelicans narrowed the gap to just one run. Jesse Hodges and Monasterio led off the frame with back-to-back hits. Robert Garcia would join Hodges on base after grounding into a force out that retired Monasterio at second. With runners on the corners and one out, Bryant FleteĀ  doubled to left field to score Hodges and advance Garcia to third. Garcia would come in to score a batter later on a ground out, bringing the Pelicans within a run of the Dash in the fifth.

The Birds tied the game with a run in the sixth. Eddy Martinez smashed a ground rule double to left field to begin the inning. He came in to score one batter later as Matt Rose laced an RBI single back up the middle to tie the game at three.

Steele was terrific for Myrtle Beach, as the southpaw allowed just three runs over seven innings before giving way to the Birds’ bullpen in extra innings. Pedro Araujo (1-0) entered the game in the eighth inning and tossed a scoreless frame to set the Birds up for a walk-off win in extras.

In the bottom of the eighth inning the Pelicans walked-off for the second time this season. Martinez jumpstarted the inning with a walk before advancing to second base on a sacrifice bunt from Rose. With two outs in the inning, Hodges would be intentionally walked to put runners on the corners for Monasterio. The Pelicans infielder promptly laced one off the base of the left field wall to give the Birds the 4-3 walk-off victory in game number one.

In game two, the Dash jumped out to the early lead for the second straight contest. With one out in the inning, Basabe bunted for a hit then stole second base to get into scoring position for Zack Collins. The Dash catcher ripped a base hit into left, which advanced Basabe to third, putting runners on the corners with just one man retired for Winston-Salem. Keon Barnum brought Basabe home with a sacrifice fly to left field which gave Winston-Salem the early 1-0 advantage.

The Dash would extend their lead in the second. With two outs in the inning, Cruz reached base on an error then scored on a double hit by Jake Fincher down the left field line. Fincher’s double stretched the Dash lead to 2-0.

Myrtle Beach would counter Winston-Salem in the bottom of the second. Martinez led off the frame with a walk and then stole second base with two outs in the inning. Trent GiambroneĀ  delivered an RBI single to center field, which cut the Dash lead in half. With the score 2-1 and Giambrone on second, Adonis Paula knotted the game up at two with a base hit to left field that scored Giambrone.

The Pelicans would continue their offensive pursuit by taking their first lead of the game in the third. Flete drew a leadoff walk and then advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt laid down by P.J. Higgins. Flete moved to third on a ground out, setting up Martinez with two outs in the frame. For the second straight game, Martinez delivered in the clutch with a base hit back up the middle that scored Flete and gave the Birds 3-2 advantage.

Myrtle Beach starter Kyle MillerĀ  allowed just one earned run over four innings of work before giving way to the Pelicans bullpen. Casey Bloomquist (3-4) followed Miller, and the righty tossed two scoreless innings en route to his third win of the season. Dillion Maples tossed a scoreless seventh for his first save, sealing the Birds’ 3-2 win in the finale.

Myrtle Beach will look to sweep the three-game series by sending RHP Oscar De La Cruz (3-2, 3.24 ERA) to the mound Thursday at 7:05 p.m.

Photo by Larry Kave/MB Pelicans

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