(June 1, 2021 – Gastonia, NC): The York Revolution stormed back from a five-run deficit to take a late lead, but dropped the opening game of a nine-game road trip, 10-9 to the Gastonia Honey Hunters on a two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the ninth inning on Tuesday evening at CaroMont Health Park.
York jumped ahead with a three-run first inning in the first ever meeting between the Revs and the expansion Honey Hunters. Melky Mesa opened the scoring by rocking an RBI double the opposite way, and after loading the bases, two more runs crossed with two outs on a Carlos Castro infield single and a walk to Chris Vazquez.
Gastonia clawed back, scoring a pair of runs in the second as Jordan Howard roped an RBI double to right-center and later stole third prompting a trip home on a throwing error to make it 3-2.
The Honey Hunters surged ahead with a five-run third inning, taking advantage of two more York errors. Howard added another RBI double on a shot down the right field line to tie the score. After the go-ahead run crossed on an error, Boog Powell smacked a two-run double down the right field line, and Mike Papi added a sac fly to center as Gastonia suddenly led 7-3.
Honey Hunters starter Alexis Candelario settled down after the shaky start, facing the minimum over his final three innings, totaling four frames on the evening. Reilly Hovis allowed just an infield hit in three innings of relief, as the Revs were totally silenced until the game reached the late innings.
York starter Jake Welch finished strong with scoreless frames in the fourth and fifth, and Austin Nicely pitched in relief on his side day, handling a scoreless sixth inning.
Gastonia added to the lead on a Jake Skole sac fly in the seventh, swelling the advantage to 8-3.
The Revs stormed back in the eighth, beginning with a Mesa single to right, the offense’s first hit to leave the infield since his first inning double. Walks to Nellie Rodriguez and Rashad Crawford loaded the bases with no outs. Josh Vitters punched an RBI single into left, and Castro chopped a two-run knock over third to draw the Revs closer. Vazquez lined an RBI single to right to make it a one-run game, and Andrew Dundon lined a sac fly to center, tying the score at 8-8 on the Revs’ second five-run outburst in the season’s first five games.
Edward Paredes logged a scoreless eighth in relief, and the Revs went in front by a run in the ninth as York appeared poised for the dramatic comeback victory. Rodriguez legged out an infield single and Crawford singled to center to set the table, as Castro drilled an RBI single high off the left field fence, narrowly missing a three-run homer but giving the Revs a 9-8 advantage.
Bubby Rossman entered in search of the save and struck out Howard for the first out. Ermindo Escobar scratched his way on with an infield single and pinch-hitter Emmanuel Tapia laced a double to left-center as the Honey Hunters suddenly were on the cusp of stealing back the victory. An intentional walk to Skole loaded the bases and set up a force before Rossman whiffed William Salas for the second out. Alexis Gomez worked the count all the way full before serving a two-run game-winning single down the right field line, as Gastonia escaped with the wild 10-9 victory.
Notes: Castro (3-for-4) ties an early-season high for hits in a game by a Revs batter, joining Welington Dotel who had previously enjoyed a three-hit effort. His four RBI are the most by a Revs batter on the young season. Darian Sandford stole his second base of the season in the top of the seventh giving him 203 steals in the Atlantic League, the fifth-most in league history. Vazquez picked up the first two RBI of his pro career. York was charged with a franchise record six errors in the game, although only two runs were marked as unearned. York righty Bruce Bell makes his first start on Wednesday opposite Gastonia right-hander Jay Gause (0-1, 6.75) with first pitch set for 6:50 p.m. Revs fans can catch the action live on SportsRadio 98.9 FM & 1350 WOYK, 989woyk.com, The New WOYK app, and the WOYK YouTube channel beginning at 6:30 p.m. with Darrell Henry on the call.