Rumble Ponies Start New Era with Twin Bill SweepMANCHESTER, NH – The Binghamton Rumble Ponies kicked off their new identity with a doubleheader sweep of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats on Saturday night at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.
Game One – Rumble Ponies 2, Fisher Cats 0
Veteran pitchers Tyler Pill and Cory Burns combined to lead the Rumble Ponies to a 2-0 season-opening win over the Fisher Cats in the doubleheader opener.
Pill grabbed the ball for his second straight Opening Day start for Binghamton and sidestepped two singles in a scoreless first inning. The righty settled down and faced one over the minimum until the Fisher Cats put two aboard in the fifth. Pill caught a break when Reese McGuire was called for interference in an attempt to break up a potential double play, killing the New Hampshire rally.
In the sixth, Cory Burns inherited two runners from Pill and nullified the threat with two strikeouts. The former Fisher Cat returned for the seventh and posted a scoreless inning to earn his first save.
Binghamton pushed their two runs across in unspectacular fashion. With the bases loaded in the second, Patrick Biondi plated Kevin Taylor by drag bunting into a fielder’s choice. Champ Stuart doubled Binghamton’s lead with an RBI groundout in the fourth.
The Ponies were the benefactors of a handful of Fisher Cats baserunning missteps. Two New Hampshire runners were thrown out at second base attempting to gain an extra base on balls in play and McGuire was doubled off first base on a liner to second to end the game.
Pill (1-0) scattered seven singles over 5-1/3 scoreless innings to earn his 26th career win with Binghamton, extending a franchise record.
Game Two – Rumble Ponies 8, Fisher Cats 2
Binghamton erupted for seven runs in the fifth inning and starter PJ Conlon tossed five strong innings in his Double-A debut to beat the Fisher Cats, 8-2, in the nightcap.
David Thompson put Binghamton on the board and ended Fisher Cats starter Conner Greene’s night with an RBI fielder’s choice. The Rumble Ponies greeted reliever Tim Mayza with six consecutive hits, highlighted by Matt Oberste’s two-run single. When the dust settled, Binghamton owned a seven-run lead.
The cushion was plenty for Conlon (1-0) to earn the win in his first start of the season. The southpaw faced one over the minimum entering the fifth before surrendering a two-run homer to Raffy Lopez. The long ball was Conlon’s only blemish of the night.
Tim Peterson and Corey Taylor each supplied a scoreless inning of relief to secure the doubleheader sweep.
The Rumble Ponies (2-0) conclude their season-opening series on Sunday afternoon at 1:35 PM. RHP Corey Oswalt makes his Double-A debut against RHP Francisco Rios. The Horizons Federal Credit Union Pregame Show can be heard starting a 1:20 PM on News Radio 1290 WNBF and the Binghamton Rumble Ponies channel on TuneIn.
POSTGAME NOTES: Binghamton swept a doubleheader for the first time since taking both games from the Reading Fightin Phils on August 16, 2014…Binghamton’s seven runs in the fifth inning were the most scored in one inning since they plated seven against the Bowie Baysox on July 20, 2016…Binghamton has won the first two games of the season for the first time since 2013
The Rumble Ponies will kick off a new era of professional baseball in the Southern Tier with their home opener on Thursday, April 13 against the Erie SeaWolves. Tickets for the game and Binghamton’s entire home schedule can be purchased at the NYSEG Stadium box office, online on www.bingrp.com and over the phone at (607) 722-FUNN.