Trash Pandas rally from 11 down to win 15-12

Rocket City scores 11 in 7th inning
Rocket City overcomes 11 run deficit to win 15-12 over the Montgomery Biscuits
Rocket City overcomes 11 run deficit to win 15-12 over the Montgomery Biscuits(WAFF)
Published: May. 30, 2023 at 10:52 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The Rocket City Trash Pandas wiped out a 12-0 deficit, storming back with the biggest offensive inning in team history to earn an improbable 15-12 win over the Montgomery Biscuits in the opener of their six-game series at Riverwalk Stadium on Tuesday night.

The win was fueled by a 11-run top of the seventh in which, the Trash Pandas set a new franchise record for runs in an inning. The 11 runs came on eight hits with two walks, an error, and a hit batter, sending 15 men to the plate to turn an eight-run deficit into a three-run lead.

Down 12-0 after three innings, the Trash Pandas began to inch their way back into the game.

In the fourth, Tucker Flint took a leadoff walk, alertly took third base on Aaron Whitefield’s infield single, and came home to score on a ground ball double play from Jose Gomez. The Trash Pandas got a little closer on Orlando Martinez’s two-run homer to right-center in the fifth, his eighth of the season. Flint got another run back in the sixth with a long solo shot down the right field line, his fourth of the season to bring the score to 12-4.

Then in the seventh, the tides turned for good. Bryce Teodosio led off with an infield single, diving into first head-first to beat a close play at the bag. David Calabrese singled to put two on with no out. Edgar Quero’s ground ball resulted in an error, allowing Teodosio to come home. Martinez singled as well to bring Calabrese home, cutting the Biscuits’ lead in half at 12-6. Jeremiah Jackson then singled to load the bases. Flint was hit by a pitch and Whitefield took a walk to bring in two more runs and keep the barrage going. The Biscuits finally got an out with the eighth batter of the inning when Gomez lifted a sacrifice fly to center to make it a 12-9 game. Kevin Maitan then drew a walk to load the bases, ending reliever Patrick Wicklander’s outing.

New Montgomery reliever Graeme Stinson (L, 1-3) immediately got ahead of Teodosio. On an 0-2 count, Teodosio crushed his second hit of the inning, a double to deep right-center to score Flint and Whitefield, making it a one-run game at 12-11 while putting the tying and go-ahead runs in scoring position. Stinson got the second out on a ground ball from Calabrese. However, the third out would not come easily. Also down 0-2 in the count, Quero ripped a single through the left side of the infield, scoring both Maitan and Teodosio to incredibly put the Trash Pandas ahead 13-12. Martinez kept the inning going with a bunt single. Jackson capped the biggest inning in Trash Pandas history with a two-run double off the base of the wall in right-center, giving the Trash Pandas a 15-12 advantage at the seventh inning stretch.

Playing with the lead for the first time, the Trash Pandas turned to Kolton Ingram out of the bullpen and he fired a scoreless seventh. The lefty also got two strikeouts to start the eighth before a single and a walk ended his night. With the tying run at the plate, the Trash Pandas turned to closer Kenyon Yovan. He got out of the jam with one pitch on Alika Williams’ fly out to center.

Yovan (S, 4) returned in the ninth and got the final three outs to finish the win and earn the save, ending one of the wildest games in Rocket City franchise history.

But from the beginning, it looked like the game would belong to the home team.

In the bottom of the first, the Biscuits plated seven unearned runs against Trash Pandas starter Landon Marceaux. All seven runs came with two outs, starting with Mason Auer’s grand slam. After three more runs came home, Marceaux was pulled in favor of Robinson Pina. Marceaux lasted just two thirds of an inning in his shortest start of the season. Montgomery added on with one run in the second and four in the third against Pina to take a 12-0 lead.

Dakota Donovan was next out of the Trash Pandas bullpen and threw 2.1 scoreless innings, striking out three. Brandon Dufault (W, 1-0) then threw a scoreless sixth inning, striking out a pair. He would earn his first Double-A win following the offensive explosion in the seventh.

The Trash Pandas got contributions from all nine starters in the win, with seven of nine driving in a run and eight of nine scoring a run and getting a hit. Martinez went 3-for-6 with the home run, three RBI, and three runs while Quero also scored three times and drove in three. Flint finished 1-for-3 with the home run, three runs scored, and two RBI. Whitefield, Teodosio, Jackson, and Calabrese all added two hits.

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