HARTFORD, Conn. – Whether they win or lose, the 2018 New Hampshire Fisher Cats have already proven time and again that their offense will keep them in any game, giving another example during Tuesday night’s 7-6 extra innings win over the Hartford Yard Goats.
Hartford struck first after a 74-minute rain delay, getting three runs during a first inning that saw the Yard Goats record three straight doubles off struggling New Hampshire starting pitcher Nick Tepesch.
New Hampshire would claw those runs back, beginning with a second inning home run from Cavan Biggio and then from RBI by Bo Bichette and Vladimir Guerrero Jr., bringing Andrew Guillotte and Jonathan Davis home respectively.
The Yard Goats would immediately regain their lead in the bottom of the third courtesy of a Yonathan Daza homer and a Brian Mundell RBI single.
That lead wasn’t safe either, although the Fisher Cats would need a little bit longer to tie things up again.
Juan Kelly brought the contest back within a run when his single to right brought home Connor Panas, but he got greedy trying to stretch the base hit. While the Fisher Cats still had two more outs to burn in the inning, they couldn’t capitalize, instead leaving things to Bo Bichette in the seventh.
There, Bichette sent a 1-1 pitch into the Dunkin’ Donuts Park picnic area, his first home run of the year.
It would take one last home run, a two-run homer courtesy of Jonathan Davis in the 11th, to finally break the deadlock.
Brian Mundell scorched a first pitch double in the bottom of the 11th to bring the Yard Goats back within a run, but that would be all the Yard Goats could muster, with the next three batters going down in order.
With the twisting lead changes, both starting pitchers left with a no decision. Tepesch pitched five innings allowing eight hits and two walks, striking out two. Hartford starter Ryan Castellani also went five, giving up six hits and two walks, striking out three.
Justin Shafer (2-2) earned the win for his work in the game’s final three innings. Marc Magliaro (3-2) was the losing pitcher, recording the 11th inning’s three outs.
At the plate, every New Hampshire batter except for Gunnar Heidt and Max Pentecost had at least one hit, with the Fisher Cats receiving multi-hit days from Davis, Biggio, Bichette, Kelly and Panas while Daza and Brendan Rodgers equally combined for four of Hartford’s nine hits on the night.
With the second inning blast, his 11th of the year, Biggio finds himself a tie for the league lead with Binghamton’s Peter Alonso, who hit two dingers earlier in the evening against Erie.
New Hampshire complete their series against the Yard Goats on Wednesday morning, sending Jordan Romano (6-0, 2.23 ERA) to the mound at 10:35 against Hartford’s Jesus Tinoco (4-3, 5.73 ERA).