The Crushers get six extra base hits as they take the final game of the series
WASHINGTON, Pa. -- The Lake Erie Crushers, presented by Mercy, used three triples, two by Connor Oliver and one by Max Casper, to beat the Washington Wild Things, 7-3 on Thursday night, at CONSOL Energy Park.
For the Crushers (33-42), the victory is their second against Washington this season and the first victory over the Wild Things since May 20. The Crushers are now 4-1 in games that Oliver hits a triple. The loss for Washington (35-38) puts them at 19-19 at home this season and 8-15 in games that are decided by three or more runs.
The Crushers had chances to score in the first and second inning but did not get a run until the third. Robb Paller and Brendan Costantino walked to start the inning. With Oliver batting, both runners moved up a base on a wild pitch. Oliver popped out to second base but Jose Barraza grounded out to second, scoring Paller.
In the fifth inning, Paller walked and then Oliver hit an RBI triple to right-center field, putting the Crushers up, 2-0.
Lake Erie would go up 5-0 in the sixth inning, as Nick Covello walked with one out and Casper hit his first triple of the season, to right-center field, scoring Covello. With two outs in the inning, Parker Norris walked and with runners on first and third, Paller hit his second double of the game, down the right field line, scoring two more runs.
Washington responded with two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. Ricky Rodriguez hit a one-out single and Jimmy Yezzo hit a two-out single, moving Rodriguez to third base. Rodriguez scored on a wild pitch and Yezzo scored on a ground-rule double off the bat of Alvaro Gonzalez.
The Crushers scored a run in the top of the seventh inning as Jose Barraza reached third base on a throwing error by the Wild Things' third baseman, Gonzalez. The ball skipped past Yezzo at first base and rolled into foul territory. Eric Grabe singled through the left side of the infield, scoring Barraza.
In the top of the ninth inning, Oliver hit his second triple of the game and scored on Barraza's sacrifice fly to center field.
The Wild Things scored one more run in the bottom of the ninth as Grant Fink knocked his eighth home run of the season to left field.
Juan Caballero (1-1) started the game for the Crushers and picked up his first win of the season. He went six innings, allowing two runs on six hits and struck out seven batters. Jordan McCoy and Josh Laxer each pitched a scoreless inning and Chandler Jagodzinski allowed a run on one hit in the ninth inning.
Matt Fraudin (5-6) started for the Wild Things and took the loss. Fraudin pitched 5.2 innings allowing five runs on four hits and five walks. He also struck out seven Crushers. Ashton Perritt went 3.1 innings, allowing two runs, one earned, and four hits.
Casper now has hit safely in four consecutive games and Oliver has hit safely in seven straight contests. Oliver now has six triples and is tied for the league lead. Jagodzinski allowed his first earned run since July 6.
The Crushers will come home to play the Schaumburg Boomers at All Pro Freight Stadium on Friday. The Crushers starting pitcher will be left-hander Connor Reed (2-1, 3.89). The Boomers will go with righty Brett Mabry (1-3, 4.29). The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05.