Worcester, MA – A combined four runs across the seventh and eighth innings overturned a slow start and were just enough to give Worcester a 4-2 win against Pittsfield Wednesday afternoon.
Pittsfield scored first in the top of the seventh, but Worcester responded, tagging Suns reliever Ryan Langford with a two-RBI double to left off the bat of PJ Barry to score Jakob Sessa and Jack Gardner.
Pittsfield (4-3) tied the game in the top of the eighth but again Worcester (3-2) re-took the lead. A Mariano Ricciardi double was followed by John Thrasher reaching on an error to set runners up on the corners. Paul Coumoulos singled home Ricciardi, and Sessa (who pinch ran for CJ McKennitt in the seventh inning) drove home Thrasher on a sacrifice fly to make it 4-2.
The game was played in front of 4,933 fans at Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field in Worcester, setting the all-time record for attendance in the park’s history. The Bravehearts welcomed local groups and schools as part of Baseball in Education Day.
It was a pitchers duel early in the game. Worcester starter Eric Chavarria and Pittsfield starter Matt Clarkin were nearly unhittable for the majority of the game. Worcester recorded its first hit in the fourth on a Coumoulos triple, while Pittsfield did not get in the hit column until the seventh. Chavarria lasted seven innings, giving up just two hits and one run with 10 strikeouts. Clarkin threw six scoreless innings, allowed just one hit and struck out two Bravehearts.
Pittsfield’s runs came via a Jack Culumovic RBI-single in the seventh and a Malcom RBI-single in the eighth. Malcom recorded two of the Suns five hits. Nobody for Worcester had a multi-hit day, but six different players recorded a hit.
Bryce Hellgeth pitched the final two innings and took the win for ‘Hearts. The Dayton-product allowed one unearned run. Langford took the loss for Pittsfield, but only one of the four runs scored while he was on the mound was earned. The two teams combined for five errors.
The win for Worcester gets the home stand off to a good start. The ‘Hearts are home for another four games played across the next five days. Worcester has an early start tomorrow for another Baseball in Education Day. First pitch versus Westfield is at 10:30 in the morning, marking the first trip to Worcester for the Starfires as an FCBL organization.