TRENTON, NJ – Since the dawn of professional baseball, no team has gone throughout an entire season without a loss, including teams that looked like they never would lose.
The New Hampshire Fisher Cats were reminded of that fact on Tuesday night, receiving a 10-4 loss at the hands of the Trenton Thunder, their first loss of this still young 2018 season.
For the first time this season, they allowed their opponents to score first, with Trenton grabbing two runs off two hits and a walk in the second.
New Hampshire starting pitcher Francisco Rios would allow three other walks in his 4 1/3 innings of work. That alone would have equaled the largest number of walks issued in a single game by Fisher Cat pitchers, but New Hampshire’s three relievers on Tuesday would go on to allow seven more walks to Trenton batters before all was said and done.
Despite the poor night on the mound for New Hampshire, the Fisher Cat bats kept things close, reducing what was a four-run lead at the end of the third down to a two-run lead by the seventh-inning stretch.
However, Trenton would send ten men to the plate in the bottom of the seventh, highlighted by a Mandy Alvarez triple that would chase Craig Breslow from the game just one batter later.
A two-out Bo Bichette RBI single in the ninth made it clear that the Thunder wouldn’t get an easy victory, but Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s second strikeout in 23 at-bats would give Trenton their final out.
New Hampshire mustered nine hits off Trenton pitching, with Bichette and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. grabbing two apiece, but Trenton ended the night with 11, the first time the Fisher Cats have been outhit this year.
Gosuke Katoh had two of those Trenton hits, including a solo homer in the third. Jhalan Jackson also provided a solo homer later in the third, with Alvarez and Chris Gittens also contributing multi-hit games for the Thunder.
Rios (0-1) was the pitcher of record for New Hampshire, while Erik Swanson (2-0) got the win for Trenton, allowing no earned runs off four hits and a pair of walks in his five innings of work.
The series concludes on Wednesday at Arm & Hammer Park as New Hampshire’s Jordan Romano (0-0, 3.60 ERA) goes up against Trenton righthander Domingo Acevedo (0-0, 3.38 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m.