Binghamton, NY – Reading starter Jake Thompson went wire-to-wire, stranding two B-Mets in the ninth, to guide the Fightin Phils past the Binghamton Mets, 3-0, in Game 2 of the Eastern Division Championship Series on Friday night at NYSEG Stadium. Thompson struck out eight in the shutout and pushed Reading to 2-0 series lead.
Thompson opened his second start against the B-Mets in 12 days by retiring the first seven batters he faced. Amed Rosario singled in the third, but was stranded in scoring position. TJ Rivera was stranded on second after opening the fourth with a double off the left-field wall. Thompson bounced back and retired 16 straight B-Mets, carrying the game into the ninth inning.
Reading had provided Thompson with plenty of offensive support. Brock Stassi doubled off Robert Gsellman to start the second inning and came home with the Fightins’ first run when Cameron Perkins threaded a single inside first base. Perkins struck again with another run-producing single in the third, doubling Reading’s lead. Nick Williams hit a solo homer off Jeff Walters in the sixth.
With the B-Mets down by three in the ninth, LJ Mazzilli pulled a one-out double down the left-field line, snapping Thompson’s cruise. Two batters later, Josh Rodriguez worked out a two-out walk, bringing Brock Peterson to the plate as the tying run. The B-Mets slugger worked a full count before taking a called third strike on the inside corner.
The damage could have been far worse had Binghamton not flashed the leather in support of Gsellman. Rosario robbed fellow shortstop JP Crawford of a hit in the first with a diving play to his left on a sharp ground ball up the middle. In the third, Joe Benson made a full-extension diving catch on the warning track in the left-field alley to take an extra-base hit away from Nick Williams. Josh Rodriguez supplied a diving catch to end the third, leaving the bases loaded.
Gsellman (0-1) lasted 4-1/3 innings and allowed two runs on nine hits in the loss. He struck out five and walked three. Four B-Met relievers combined to allowed one run over 5-2/3 innings. Thompson (1-0) allowed three hits and walked one in Reading’s first nine-inning complete game of the season.
The B-Mets continue the best-of-five series on Saturday night at 7:05 PM. RHP Gabriel Ynoa starts against RHP Ben Lively. The Horizons Federal Credit Union Pregame Show can be heard starting at 6:20 PM on Newsradio 1290 WNBF and the Binghamton Mets channel on TuneIn.
POSTGAME NOTES: The loss was Binghamton’s fourth shutout defeat in the postseason…the B-Mets have never overcome an 0-2 deficit to win a series in franchise history…Binghamton failed to get a runner past second base against Thompson
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