The Portland Sea Dogs broke a tie game with three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning and defeated the Binghamton Mets, 6-3, in Game 3 of the Eastern Division Championship Series night at Hadlock Field. Despite blowing a three-run advantage, Portland held off the B-Mets to take a 2-1 series lead.
Portland cracked the scoreboard in the second against Steven Matz. After the Sea Dogs loaded the bases on three singles, Heiker Meneses lifted a sacrifice fly to center, plating Keury De La Cruz with the first run of the game.
Rodriguez kept the B-Mets at bay through three perfect innings before walking Brandon Nimmo to start the fourth. The lefty erased the gaffe by coaxing an inning-ending double play out of Brian Burgamy, Binghamton’s sixth double play of the series.
The Sea Dogs stretched their lead to three with a pair of tallies in the fifth. Meneses started the frame by ripping a double to the left-field alley. Rusney Castillo chased him home with a double into the right-field corner. Mike Miller tacked on by zipping an RBI single back up the middle.
Rodriguez tossed five no-hit innings before Binghamton broke through in the sixth. Xorge Carrillo finally put the B-Mets in the hit column by banging a one-out double off the “Maine Monster” in left field. Two batters later, Brandon Nimmo plated Carrillo with a double to the right-field alley and took third on an error by Shannon Wilkerson. Nimmo scampered home four pitches later to cut the deficit to one on a wild pitch.
Binghamton caught a break to erase the deficit in the seventh. Following a two-out walk to Darrell Ceciliani, Travis Taijeron threaded a double inside the third-base bag. Keury De La Cruz overran the grounder in the left-field corner, allowing Ceciliani to score from first to tie the game.
Portland wasted little time breaking the knotted contest, getting to reliever Paul Sewald with three consecutive hits. Sean Coyle capped the stretch by ripping a go-ahead single into left, plating Castillo from second base. Chase Huchingson took over for the righty and collected a strikeout before Carson Blair brought home a run with an infield single to short. Wilfredo Tovar compounded the issue and allowed another run to score by forcing an errant throw to first.
Binghamton mustered one last threat against Aaron Kurcz in the ninth inning. Brian Burgamy walked with one and Jayce Boyd blooped a single inside the right-field line. With the tying run at the plate, Ceciliani flied out to center and Taijeron flied out to the warning track in left-center, ending Binghamton’s hopes.
Kurcz (1-0) allowed one run over 2-1/3 innings of scoreless relief to collect the win. Sewald (0-1) was tagged for three runs (one earned) on three hits in 1-1/3 innings on the mound.
Matz allowed three runs on six hits over five innings in the no-decision. Rodriguez surrendered three runs (two earned) on three hits over 6-2/3 innings.
POSTGAME NOTES: Binghamton has overcome a 2-1 series deficit once in franchise history, defeating the Canton-Akron Indians in the Eastern League Championship in 1992 in five games after trailing 2-1…Binghamton’s 2 through 6 hitters combined to go 1-for-14 the plate… game time was moved to due to the threat of inclement weather in Portland - team press release