BY MICHAEL HAMMOND | Minor League Knocks
July 17, 2017 | Mahoning Valley Scrappers 11, Batavia Muckdogs 5 | New York-Penn League (SS)
NILES, Ohio – An offensive outburst led by Simeon Lucas with six RBI powered the Mahoning Valley Scrappers 11-5 over the Batavia Muckdogs at Eastwood Field on Monday in Niles, OH.
Lucas hit a grand slam that blew open a seven-run seventh for the Scrappers, singled in a run in the ninth, and added an RBI-groundout in the third.
The 2014 seventh round pick by the Cleveland Indians is hitting .333/.338/.533 12 games into his first real stint above the Arizona League. It is a small sample size, but a big improvement over his .233/.320/.385 slash line in his first three years in the minors.
While the Scrappers won the game, it was Batavia who got on the board first. In the top of the third, Samuel Castro and J.C. Millan reached on back-to-back two-out singles. Castro scored the first run of the game after two-consecutive wild pitches from MV starter Francisco Perez with Ben Fisher batting.
The Scrappers didn’t trail for long as they put a pair of runs on the board in the bottom half. Lucas’ RBI-groundout started the scoring and Oscar Gonzalez singled home Nolan Jones in the next at-bat.
Batavia retook the lead in the fifth with David Gauntt, Harrison White, and Jhonny Santos leading off the inning in order with singles. Gauntt scored on Santos’ single and White came in on a Castro groundout.
The flood gates opened up in the seventh for Mahoning Valley. Josh Alberius relieved Batavia starter, Alejandro Mateo, and allowed four straight singles by the bottom four in the order to leadoff the inning. A wild pitch brought home the second run of the inning.
After a fly ball and an intentional walk of Jones, Lucas unloaded his grand slam to right-center. Dillon Persinger followed up a Gonzalez fly ball with a single and stolen base then scored on a two-out single from Will Benson. It was Benson’s second hit in the inning after leading off with a single.
The Muckdogs showed some fight in the top half, but scored just two to cut the lead to 9-5. MV then took those two runs right back during its turn in the eighth to go up 11-5 for good.
Mateo put together a decent start for the Muckdogs, going six innings and allowing two runs on seven hits and seven strikeouts, and was even in line for the win as he left the game.
Princeton product, Cameron Mingo, received the win after two innings of relief work giving up zero runs on two hits and a strikeout.
A three-game win streak has propelled MV into a tie for first in the New-York Penn League’s Pinckney Division with the West Virginia Black Bears at 16-11. Monday’s game was the beginning of a three game set between Mahoning Valley and Batavia.
Batavia Muckdogs (10-16) 001 020 020 – 5 12 0
Mahoning Valley Scrappers (16-11) 002 000 72x – 11 17 4
7/17 Mahoning Valley 11, Batavia 5
7/18 Batavia at Mahoning Valley
7/19 Batavia at Mahoning Valley
Batavia Muckdogs (MIA)
#10 Thomas Jones 2/5, RBI, 2 K, ROE
21st Ben Fisher 0/4, R, BB, K
23rd Tyler Curtis 1/4, R, 2B, K
31st Harrison White 1/4, R
36th Josh Alberius 0.2 IP, 6 H, 7 R, BB
Mahoning Valley Scrappers (CLE)
#7 Will Benson 3/4, R, RBI, K
#8 Nolan Jones 1/4, 2 R, IBB, K
#27 Oscar Gonzalez 1/5, RBI, K
18th Dillon Persinger 1/4, R, SB, 2 K
21st Tyler Friis 3/5, R, RBI, 2B, CS
22nd Clark Scolamiero 3/4, 2 R, RBI, 2 SB, K
24th Riley Echols 2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, BB, 4 K
Eastwood Field is a 6,000 capacity stadium located on the Eastwood Mall Complex in Nile, OH. Their might not be a bad seat in the stadium, but the concourse size begs to have more room. A fairly deep ballpark, 335-foot in both corners and 405-foot to center, the fence starts low in right, gets higher in center, and reaches its maximum height in left.
Eastwood Field was home to Wellness Night on Monday, with various health-based companies setting up tables on the concourse to give out health tips.
Richmond Flying Squirrels at Erie Seawolves on July 18.
Follow @michaelhammond_ on Twitter for live updates.