BINGHAMTON – Jeff McNeil and Peter Alonso launched back-to-back home runs with two outs in the ninth inning, sending the Rumble Ponies past the SeaWolves, 6-5, Tuesday night at NYSEG Stadium. Binghamton’s second walk-off win of 2018 stretches their season-best winning streak to five games. They’ve topped Erie seven times in eight tries this season.
Down to their final out, Binghamton got a lift from their big bat bashers. After Mark Ecker set down Champ Stuart and Levi Michael, the SeaWolves were just one out from taking the middle of game of the three-game set. Jeff McNeil, who already extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a first-inning single, sent a high drive to deep right field. Troy Montgomery tracked it all the way to the wall and leaped but could not come up with the baseball. McNeil’s league-leading 22ndextra-base hit tied the game 5-5. Just three pitches later Alonso followed in McNeil’s footsteps, bashing his league-leading 11th home run over the right-center field wall to send the Ponies home victorious.
Ecker (2-3) nabbed only the two outs in the ninth inning, before allowing the consecutive blasts.
Eric Hanhold (3-1), meanwhile, helped preserve what was a one-run Ponies deficit by tossing 1-2/3 innings scoreless frames.
Binghamton played come-from-behind baseball for most of the game, despite plating the game’s first tally in the first inning
The SeaWolves grabbed their first lead of the night in a three-run three-hit third inning, against Rumble Ponies starter Joseph Shaw. After setting down the first two SeaWolves, Shaw had Jacob Robson with an 0-2 count before plunking him on the right knee. After Will Maddox extended the frame with a two-out single, Josh Lester doubled down the right field line to score a pair. Blaise Salter took Shaw’s next pitch and punched it into right field, plating Lester from second, making it 3-1 Erie.
Peter Alonso responded to the SeaWolves three-run frame by launching a third-inning blast over the left-center field wall. His 10thlongball of the season is tied for the most in the Eastern League.
Tim Tebow’s RBI single in the fourth inning earned the Heisman winner his second game-tying hit in as many nights. His knock plated Jhaon Urena, knotting the game 3-3.
Shaw would complete the fifth inning, but not before Sergio Alcantara took advantage of a wild pitch, scoring from third with Will Maddox at the plate. Shaw went 5-2/3 innings, allowed five runs, and struck out seven. He was pulled with no outs in the sixth inning for Corey Taylor, after Danny Woodrow’s sacrifice fly pushed the SeaWolves in front 5-3.
Binghamton scratched one more run across in the seventh inning. Champ Stuart kick started the rally, drawing a leadoff walk against SeaWolves starter Tyler Alexander. After a Michael single, Alexander was yanked for reliever John Schreiber. He was greeted with an infield single by Peter Alonso, scoring Stuart to make a 5-4 game.
Alexander lasted six innings, allowing three runs (two earned) with six strikeouts in his third start against Binghamton this season.
Corey Taylor combined with Hanhold to limit the SeaWolves to just two hits over the final 3-1/3 innings.
Binghamton (19-17) wraps up their three-game series with Erie on Wednesday evening. RHP Andrew Church takes the bump against Erie RHP Beau Burrows. First pitch at NYSEG Stadium is slated for 6:35 p.m. The Horizons Federal Credit Union pregame show starts at 6:20 p.m. and can be heard on NewsRadio 1290 WNBF and the Binghamton Rumble Ponies channel on TuneIn.
POSTGAME NOTES: Jeff McNeil’s 14-game hitting streak is the second longest in the Eastern League this season (Vlad Guerrero Jr – 15 games)…Peter Alonso had his first multi-home run game of the season…The Binghamton bullpen has not allowed a run in the last 10.1 innings.