Cats’ curse against Hartford continues

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Yennsy Diaz (credit – Andrew Sylvia)

MANCHESTER, N.H. – The New Hampshire Fisher Cats are on the verge of being swept for the first time ever by the Hartford Yard Goats, falling 8-5 on Sunday afternoon.

New Hampshire struck first, as Riley Adams’ dribbling single allowed Santiago Espinal to score, with Forrest Wall bringing Kevin Smith around on a single in the third.

Fisher Cats starting pitcher Yennsy Diaz escaped jams in the second and third as well, but a miscue in the fourth came back to haunt him. Despite striking out Hartford fourth-inning leadoff batter Alan Trejo, the third strike went wild, allowing Trejo to reach first safely and later score on a Brett Boswell homer to right.

New Hampshire countered with a home run of their own in the fourth, a two-run shot from Riley Adams, but the Yard Goats were not done.

In the fifth, Colton Welker’s sacrifice fly brought home Hartford’s third run of the contest, with Diaz allowing two more runs in the sixth.

Hartford took three more insurance runs in the ninth, sealing the victory.

Diaz (4-4) got the loss, giving up eight hits and striking out six during his six-inning appearance.

Brandon Gold (5-3) was the winner, also going six innings, allowing six hits and a walk while striking out seven. Three of the four runs on scored on his watch were earned.

At the plate, Trejo led the way with a 3-for-5 day, with Boswell and Manuel Melendez also contributing a pair of hits each for Hartford.

Adams had two hits for New Hampshire, with three RBI.

The series concludes on Memorial Day with first pitch scheduled for 3:35 p.m.

New Hampshire’s designated starting pitcher will be Hector Perez (3-2, 6.00 ERA), with lefty Ty Culbreth (3-3, 4.08 ERA) taking the mound for Hartford.