E-Twins go deep in toppling Rays, 9-4

Published 6:00 am Monday, July 29, 2019



The Elizabethton Twins (20-15) took the rubber game of the three-game set with Princeton, unleashing some heavy lumber with three home runs and took a 9-4 victory on Thursday night at Northeast Community Credit Union Ball Park.

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Princeton leadoff hitter Brett Wisely hit the first pitch he saw from Twins starter Andriu Marin over the leftfield fence for his third home run of the season for a 1-0 Rays lead. The Rays plated another run in the third on three hits and a sacrifice fly by catcher Luis Leon.

“That first guy hammered us,” Twins manager Ray Smith said of Wisely. “He launched the first pitch out of the park and put us behind the eight-ball right away.

“Our starter (Marin) wasn’t bad, but he started leaking oil there in the fourth and Torres came in and did a pretty decent job. Cha was ok too— he struck out a couple of tough hitters at the end.”

Twins catcher Janigson Villalobos cracked his third homer of the season in the last of the third to make it a 2-1 game.

With two away in the stanza Willie Joe Garry, Jr. doubled into the gap in left centerfield and leftfielder Max Smith singled him around to tie the game at 2-2.

An infield error by Princeton put Seth Gray on base and designated hitter Parker Phillips singled to right to load the bases.

Right fielder Matt Wallner then doubled to left center to plate two more Twins runs and that was all for Rays starter Jose Lopez, who went 2.2 innings.

Lopez surrendered six runs (two earned) on five hits, striking out three with no walks. Lefthander Carter Bach came on in relief and he uncorked a pair of wild pitches to bring home two more Twins runs and Elizabethton took a 6-2 lead.

Shortstop Will Holland took Bach deep to lead off the fourth with his second home run of the season for a 7-2 Twins lead.

Leon drove in his second run of the game in the top of the fifth with a double to left that plated Wisely who walked to open the frame and made it a 7-3 contest.

Garry smashed his third home run of the season in the last of the sixth with Ruben Santana aboard to stake the Twins to a 9-3 advantage.

“Me and Jeff (Reed) have been doing extra work in the cage on my timing and my swing,” Garry, Jr. said. “I think it has been showing the last few weeks and I am working on getting my on-base percentage up. I’m trying to stay aggressive and attack the first pitch.”

Erik Cha – the third Twins pitcher of the game – came on in the eighth and gave up a leadoff double to Leon, but gave up just one run in his two innings of work.

“I felt like I mixed my pitches pretty well.” Cha said. “I just let my defense work behind me. Leon, I gave him a pretty good pitch but he beat me there.”

E-Twins 9-4

Princeton 101 010 001 –  4 10 1

E-Twins   006 102 00x –  9  9 1

W – Torres (1-0). L – Lopez (2-3).