Lehigh Valley IronPigs eliminated from second-half title chase

With their postseason hopes hanging on by a thread coming into the night, the Lehigh Valley IronPigs were officially eliminated from postseason contention as they fell 3-2 to the Worcester Red Sox Friday night at Coca-Cola Park.

Prior to the loss, the Durham Bulls had already defeated the Gwinnett Stripers earlier in the night to eliminate the IronPigs and clinch the second half International League title.

After a scoreless first two innings, the IronPigs got on the board in the second. Jim Haley singled with one out and stole second. One out later, Scott Kingery singled him home to make it 1-0.

Worcester tied the game in the third. Nick Sogard tripled to open the inning and Ronaldo Hernandez was then hit by a pitch. Stephen Scott then grounded into a double play that scored Sogard to tie the game.

Sogard started another rally in the fifth for the WooSox. He doubled with one out and after a sequence of hit batter, fielder’s choice, hit batter, the bases were loaded. Niko Kovadas worked a walk, forcing home Sogard to make it 2-1 Worcester.

Sogard walked to begin the seventh and moved to third after back-to-back groundouts. With two away, Narciso Crook legged out an infield single, allowing Sogard to score, making it 3-1.

In the ninth, the IronPigs mounted a final charge. With two outs Esteban Quiroz and Scott Kingery walked. Weston Wilson then singled to left, scoring Quiroz to make it a one-run game. Luis Guerrero struck out Matt Kroon to end the game and secure the win for Worcester. Guerrero allowed a run on one hit and two walks, striking out two in getting the save.

Brandon Walter (3-5) earned the win for the WooSox, allowing just one run in five innings on three hits, striking out four.

In his IronPigs debut, Mick Abel (0-1) took the loss, giving up two runs in 4.2 innings on five hits and three walks, striking out six.

The series continues at 6:35 p.m. Saturday at Coca-Cola Park.

https://www.mcall.com/2023/09/22/lehigh-valley-ironpigs-eliminated-from-second-half-title-chase-lose-to-woosox-3-2/ Lehigh Valley IronPigs eliminated from second-half title chase

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