By Tyler Murray –
After trailing 1-0 and 4-2, the Worcester Red Sox battled back for a 6-5 win over the Rochester Red Wings in 10 innings on Friday night at Innovative Field.
The WooSox manufactured the game-winning rally in the top of the 10th. Wilyer Abreu started the extra frame at second base, and moved to third on a deep flyout by Jorge Alfaro. The second pitch to Greg Allen eluded catcher Kevin Plawecki, allowing Abreu to come home and break the 4-4 tie. Allen eventually drew a walk, then quickly stole second and third base. He came in to score on a sacrifice fly from Nick Sogard, giving Worcester a 6-4 lead heading to the bottom of the 10th.
Chase Shugart (S, 4) came on for the final three outs. He allowed a one-out RBI double to Richie Martin to make it a 6-5 game, but induced three groundouts to seal the win.
Worcester forced extra innings with two runs in the sixth. Trailing 4-2, Daniel Palka lined a double down the first base line and scored on a single to left by Sogard. After stealing second base, Sogard came in with the tying run on a two-out single by Caleb Hamilton.
Starter Chris Murphy recorded a no-decision, allowing four runs on seven hits (including a solo home run by Franklin Barreto) with two walks and six strikeouts.
The WooSox bullpen was spectacular. Joe Jacques (1 IP, 2 H), AJ Politi (1 IP, 1 K), Kaleb Ort (1 IP, 1 K), Ryan Sherrif (W, 2-1) and Shugart combined to hold Rochester without an earned run over the final five innings of the game.
Rochester scored in the first inning for the fourth time in four games this week, this time on an RBI single from Wilson Garcia. Worcester answered back in the third with solo home runs from both Abreu and Palka. Each slugger launched their fifth long ball of the year to put the WooSox in front, 2-1.
The Red Wings rallied to retake a 3-2 lead in the fifth, with two runs scoring on a pair of singles from Plawecki and Cody Wilson. Barreto’s homer extended the advantage to 4-2 in the fifth.
David Hamilton made his third career start in center field and made two putouts. At the plate, he started the game with a walk and a stolen base, which places Hamilton and Allen atop the league leaderboard with 21 steals apiece.
After this week-long series in Rochester, the WooSox return home to Polar Park – recently voted Best Ballpark in Triple-A by the readers of Ballpark Digest – for a six-game homestand against the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (Philadelphia Phillies) from Tuesday, May 16 – Sunday, May 21.