Pelicans blow big lead but bounce back in extra innings

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans, Class A-Advanced affiliate of the Texas Rangers, used Bobby McFerrin-like tap moves to walk out of TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark with a 5-4 win over the Carolina Mudcats Thursday.

Tied at 4-all in the bottom of the 11th inning, Santiago Chirino singled with one out to set up Edwin Garcia for the game-winning hit.  Garcia dribbled the first pitch his way about 60 feet down the third base line.  Carolina pitcher JD Reichenbach slid to knock the ball down and then threw high to first.  Chirino came all the way around to score and win the game.

That, however, is where the controversy comes in.  The throw to Mudcats catcher Dwight Childs beat Chirino, but the Pelicans infielder danced around the catcher and touched home with the palm of his hand.  H ewas called safe by umpire Roberto Moreno, who was immediately accosted by Reichenbach, ripe with rage at the game-ending call.

Carolina had battled just to get it to that point.  Myrtle Beach led 4-1 in the ninth inning with 16-for16 closer Ben Rowen on the mound.

The submariner allowed two singles with two outs before Ronny Rodriguez homered to tie the game.  It was the first run(s) allowed by Rowen since June 3rd and the first at home since May 9th.  The homer was the third against the pitcher in his career.  That forced extras.

Myrtle Beach had gotten the offense going earlier in the game, scoring in the first, third and fourth off starter Francisco Jimenez.  In the first Brett Nicholas doubled in Teodoro Martinez.  In the thirda sac fly from Hanser Alberto and a single by Chris Grayson plated two runs.  Finally a sac fly from Odubel Herrera scored a run in the fourth.

Behind the plate Tomas Telis shined for the Birds. He gunned down three runners on strike-him-out-throw-him-out double plays.

The Pelicans move to 31-22 and host the Mudcats on Friday night, 80’s Night, at TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

Photo courtesy of MB Pelicans

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