For the second time in eight days the Yankees pitchers combined to allow just one hit as they held on to win 1-0 and even the three game series with the Burlington Royals.
Neither team was able to have much success at the plate as both starting pitchers were dealing early. The Yankees sent Ken Waldichuk out to make his fifth start of the year. Pulaski manager Luis Dorante once again had a plan for Waldichuk to only pitch three innings as he has done in every game so far. In his three innings, he struck out three batters and retired every batter he faced in order.
Royals starting pitcher Adrian Alcantara also did not allow a base runner until the third inning when Jake Pries was able to draw a one-out walk. Burlington didn’t allow him to get comfortable on base, as they were able to force the Yankees to hit into an inning ending double play.
Reid Anderson came in from the bullpen in the top of the fourth inning and was also able to retire the Royals in order. He struck out all three batters he faced in the top of the fifth inning to keep the Royals hitless through five innings. The Royals finally got their first base runner of the game as Anderson gave up a walk in the top of the sixth inning with one out. After stealing second base, the Royals had the first runner of the game in scoring position. Anderson was able to strikeout the last two batters to get the Yankees out of the jam still scoreless.
The Yankees finally broke through as Jake Pries hit his third home run of the season over the left field wall to give the Yankees a 1-0 lead on the first hit of the game for either team. Anthony Volpe gave the Yankees their second hit of the game as he was able to leg out a sharply hit ball to the third baseman. Volpe stole second but was left stranded as the Yankees failed to get him any further with two outs.
The Royals added another base runner in the top of the seventh inning as Anderson hit a batter with one out but the Yankees quickly erased the mistake as they ended the inning with a double play and kept the Royals hitless through the seventh. Anderson returned for the eighth inning and once again sat the Royals down in order to put the Yankees just three outs away from the first Appalachian League combined no-hitter since 2011.
The Yankees tried to add some insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth inning as Pries added to his night with a two-out single. Jake Farrell added another single to give the Yankees runners on first and second but they would not get any further and the Yankees had to rely on their pitching to seal the win.
After five innings and 62 pitches Reid Anderson’s night was over and Pulaski brought in Tyler Johnson to pitch the ninth. Burlington broke up the no-hit bit with a lead off double off the base of the right field wall. With the no-hitter gone the most important thing was making sure the Yankees held onto their 1-0 lead. Burlington failed to advanced the runner to third on a bunt attempt and ended up striking out for the first out of the ninth. A deep fly ball to center field allowed the runner to advance to third base and just 90 feet away from tying the game. A two-out walk put the go-ahead run on first base. Johnson got Jake Means to fly out to Jake Pries in right field to end the ballgame and seal the Yankees 1-0 win.
With the victory Sunday night, the Yankees will look to win the series tonight as they conclude the three game series on Faith Night and Christmas and July. The Yankees will be collecting toys for Toys For Tots. With faith night, church groups are offered a special $10 package that includes a game ticket, hot dog, chips and a fountain drink. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit www.pulaskiyankees.net or call the front office at 540-980-1070.