WAPPINGERS FALLS – Yes, it was another long night at Dutchess Stadium. The 20th season of Renegades baseball has now featured five extra-inning games through the first 14 played at home. This is all well and good of course, if the team wins more of those games than they lose, because each one carries a lot of weight. On Saturday night, the Renegades were on the winning end of a 7-6, 10-inning battle with the State College Spikes in the first meeting of the season.
Three batters into the bottom of the first and they had two runners on after Ariel Soriano doubled to right-center and Ty Young was hit by a pitch. Renegades catcher Oscar Hernandez then drilled a Kevin Herget 1-0 offering over the left field wall to give his team a quick 3-0 lead. Renegades starter Chris Kirsch got a little help from his defense in the second after two straight one-out singles by David Washington and Mason Katz. Spikes third baseman Carson Kelly then rolled into an inning-ending 6-4-3 double play.
The shutout held until the top of the fourth after Ronald Castillo’s RBI double brought in Bruce Caldwell, who had led things off with a double. Kirsch later walked Kelly to put the tying runs on base, but Luke Voit grounded out to end the frame. State College tied it in the fifth after Kirsch balked in a run with the bases loaded to make it 3-2. With runners at second and third, Ronald Castillo chopped a groundball over the mound and into center field to give the Spikes a 4-3 lead.
In the bottom of the fifth, Hudson Valley retook the lead after eight Renegades came to the plate. They capitalized on a pair of Spikes errors, a wild pitch, and a go-ahead RBI single from Jonathan Quiñonez to make it a 6-4 game. Once again, the Spikes bounced back from a deficit against Eli Echarry in the seventh. A one-out double by Steven Ramos opened the door to a Caldwell RBI single with two outs that made it 6-5. In the next inning, with Katz at second, Kelly dropped down a sacrifice bunt but Hernandez’ throw to third was not in time and both runners were safe. Voit then grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to clear the bases, and tie the game at six as Katz came in from third.
Both teams had singles in the ninth inning, but neither runner would advance past first. Facing Spikes reliever Jhonny Polanco in the bottom of the tenth, Hernandez walked on five pitches. Quiñonez blooped a single to left with the outfielders positioned deep, which brought up left fielder Granden Goetzman who dropped down a perfect bunt on the third base side. Polanco fielded the ball but slipped as he threw to first, and the ball sailed all the way down the right field line to score Hernandez and give the Renegades a dramatic 7-6 victory.