PP Game Notes: Thunder 5, Rock Cats 4

The Trenton Thunder snapped their five game losing streak with a 5-4 12 inning win over the New Britain Rock Cats to salvage the final game in the three game series. David Shepard got the win for Trenton, improving to 4-6 on the year. Shepard pitched the final four inning for the Thunder, throwing close to 60 pitches. Merrill seemed pleased that Shepard was able to allow runners to reach base but never allow the big hit that would have given the Rock Cats a lead.

"Any win is a big win." Merrill said after the game.

Teuris Olivares singled for the Thunder to lead off the twelfth inning and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Craig Wilson. After Jason Grove drew a walk to put runners at first and third, Bronson Sardinha singled to left and Olivares scored just beating the throw from left field and the tag of Gabby Torres to give the Thunder their 5-4 win.

Jason Pope pitched well for the Thunder, despite allowing all four Rock Cat runs in his five plus innings of work. Pope retired the nine of the first ten batters he faced before melting down in the middle innings. Ryan Owens opened the scoring with a home run to left for New Britain after the Thunder had opened a 4-0 lead. Tommy Watkins followed the Owens homer with a double to left center and scored on a single to left by James Tomlin to halve the Thunder advantage.

Jake Weber accounted for two of Trenton's five runs with a sacrifice fly that scored Jason Grove to give the Thunder their first run and leading off the fourth with a lead off homer to right, his fourth of the year. Weber's run production was sandwiched by Craig Wilson's two out, two run double to right center that scored Andy Cannizaro and Mitch Jones.

Pope started the sixth inning for Trenton but was lifted after allowing three consecutive singles to lead off the inning. The third of the singles, off the bat of Bryan Kennedy, scored Luis Maza to make it a 4-3 game. Dave Elder came on behind Pope and walked the first two batters he faced. Elder's walk to Watkins forced in Garrett Jones to tie the game at 4.

Notes: Felix Heredia will rejoin the Thunder tomorrow and pitch two innings according to Thunder manager Stump Merrill. Heredia allowed three runs in two innings of work in first outing with the Thunder….Since July 1st-a span of 52 games- Mitch Jones is hitting .299 with 18 home runs, 42 runs scored and 47 runs batted in. Additionally, for the season, Jones is first in the Eastern League in extra base hits with 65 and tied for first in home runs with 37. Jones is tied with Ryan Howard for the EL home run lead. Howard was a member of the Reading Phillies before being called up to Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on July 31st….Craig Wilson is hitting .321 at home and .316 on the road for the Thunder this year….Pitching match ups for the rest of the home season ending series against Binghamton have Francisco Villegas (1-3) taking on Mike Meyers (0-3) tomorrow, Ramon Ramirez (4-5) taking on Brian Bannister (2-2) on Saturday night and culminating with Carlos Reyes (1-6) facing off with Ken Chenard (9-4) in the home finale on Sunday….The Thunder end their season with a nine game road trip to Altoona and Erie the final week of the season, ending on Labor Day.

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