The Yankees used a two run sixth inning to slide past the Danville Braves Saturday night at Calfee Park and complete their third come from behind win at home this season.
The Braves came out swinging tonight. They took a 2-0 lead just two pitches into the game as the first two batters swung at the first pitch of their at bat against Yankees starter Jhonatan Munoz. The second pitch was the one that did the damage for Danville as Beau Philip sent a no-doubter over the right field wall for a two-run home run.
Bryce Ball, who leads the Appalachian League in almost every offensive category, also swung at the first pitch he saw and hit a ball a country mile that ended up just foul and eventually ended up flying out to Yankees left fielder Robert Javier.
The Yankees answered back with a run of their own in the bottom of the first inning to draw within one run. Both teams were kept at bay for the next three innings before Bryce Ball added to his Appalachian League home run lead with his fifth of the year to give Danville a 3-1 lead.
The Yankees again cut the deficit to just one run in the bottom of the fifth inning. Robert Javier tripled to center field to score Chad Bell from first base after he had drawn a one-out walk. The sixth inning would prove to be the final inning on the mound for Munoz who finished with eight strikeouts including two in the top of the sixth.
After giving up two hits on his first two pitches of the game, Munoz settled down and only allowed the one hit to the next 20 batters he faced. All together Munoz wrapped up his second appearance of the season with 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, and 8 K’s.
Oliver Dunn led off the bottom of the sixth inning with a single right in between the third baseman and the shortstop. Ryder Green hit a ball that scooted all the way down the left field line into the corner of the outfield for a double and scored Dunn. Spencer Henson hit a deep fly ball that allowed Green to advance to third easily. Madison Santos earned his first RBI of the year when he hit a ball that went right through the second baseman’s legs and into right field and gave the Yankees their first lead of the game.
Tyler Johnson made his Pulaski Yankee debut when he pitched one hitless inning in the seventh before passing the ball to Alex Mejias in the eighth inning. After getting two quick outs, Danville was able to get a single and draw a walk to put the potential tying run at second base and that’s when Luis Dorante called on closer, Derek Craft.
Craft made his fourth appearance of the season and inherited a tough situation that got increasingly tougher when he gave up just his second walk of the year to give Danville bases loaded and Bryce Ball at the plate. Craft and Ball dueled to a 2-2 count before Craft got the better of Ball and got him to ground out to second base to end the Danville threat.
Craft returned to close out the ninth inning and earned 1-2-3 inning sealing the come from behind win for Pulaski who moved to 6-4 on the season and put themselves in first place in the division by a half game over Danville.
The Yankees and braves will face off again tonight at Calfee Park to see who wins this early season series. The Yankees will host Field of Dreams night at the park with a special appearance from Dwier Brown, who played John Kinsella, in the 1989 film. Fans with the meet and great packages will be treated to a pre-game Q&A with an autograph and photograph opportunity as well as a chance to play catch on the field with Dwier Brown after the game ends. Tickets can be purchased through www.pulaskiyankees.net or calling the office at (540) 980-1070.
By CORY HILBORNE, The Pulaski Yankees