Ray Olmedo had two hits, including a clutch RBI single to back the pitching of Pat Dean in a 3-2 Red Wings win over the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders Sunday night at Frontier Field.
The win kept the Red Wings one game behind wild card leader Norfolk, who defeated Durham by the same score Sunday night. The Wings can still make the playoffs with a win and a Norfolk loss Monday. The two teams would finish in a virtual tie and Rochester would have the tiebreaker based on a better record in the head-to-head series.
The Red Wings and RailRiders meet Monday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. (gates open at 12 noon) in the final regular season game for both clubs.
Rookie left-hander Dean allowed a bloop double down the right field line to lead-off batter Corey Patterson, and Patterson scored on a fielder's choice ground ball by Adonis Garcia.
Rochester was going up against Graham Stoneburner, who is 4-0 on the road with a 3.48 ERA in seven games this year. Stoneburner was 1-0 against the Wings this year with a 0.90 ERA in two starts. James Beresford walked with one out in the top of the first inning. After Eduardo Escobar grounded into a fielders choice to second, Chris Parmelee singled to put runners at first and second. Jeff Clement walked to load the bases with two outs. Aaron Hicks hit a hard ground ball back up the middle but shortstop Alberto Gonzalez fielded the ball and stepped on second to end the inning.
Both Dean and Stoneburner pitched perfect second and third inning keeping the game in favor of Scranton 1-0.
The first batter of the fourth inning, Ronnier Mustelier lined a ball back up the middle that hit Dean on his left ankle. Dean fell to the ground and laid there for some time. After trainer Larry Bennese and manager Gene Glynn came out to check on Dean, they decided to leave him in the game. With a runner on first, Dean got Garcia to ground into a double play to clear the bases. Dean ended the inning with his fifth strikeout of the game.
Rochester got its first baserunner since the first inning when Parmelee singled to left with one out in the fourth. Hicks hit a hard line drive to center field, that Garcia misplayed and let the ball go over his head. Parmelee scored and Hicks made it all the way to third for the triple. With two outs and Hicks still at third, Ray Olmedo hit a single just past the reach of the diving third baseman to score Hicks and give Rochester a 2-1 lead. Eric Fryer singled to right, putting runners at the corners. Stoneburner (4-6) got Antoan Richardson to ground out to short to end the inning and limit the damage.
Hicks bunted for a one out single in the sixth inning off reliever Sam Demel. Demel picked off Hicks right before walking Eric Farris. Olmedo singled to move Farris over to second. Demel fell behind 3-1 to Fryer before fighting back and striking him out to end the inning.
With one out in the seventh inning, Richardson ran down a ball that was well hit to left center gap, saving what could of been a double off the bat of Garcia.
Dean (3-2) tossed seven innings and allowed just four hits and a run, striking out six and not walking a batter. A. J. Achter took over in the top of the eighth for Rochester and worked a scoreless inning.
Parmelee tripled to open the Wings' half of the eighth inning, and Clement delivered an RBI single to put Rochester ahead 3-1.
Michael Tonkin came on in the ninth and got a quick out, then walked the next batter. A single by Mustelier just snuck by the glove of first baseman Parmelee, and the RailRiders had the tying runs on the corners with one out. Tonkin struck out Garcia for the second out, but Neil Medchill hit a two-strike single to pull Scranton/Wilkes-Barre to within a run at 3-2. But Tonkin caught Bobby Wilson looking at a third strike to end the game. It was Tonkin's 14th save of the season.