SS Aledmys Diaz struck with a go-ahead, two-run home run in the eighth, the Cardinals third homer of the night, powering Springfield to the 7-6 come-from-behind win against the Tulsa Drillers before 2,555 fans at Hammons Field on Monday night. RF David Washington provided the Cardinals other two home runs with a pair of solo shots.
The Drillers (16-22, 46-61) cracked the scoreboard first with one run in the top of the first against RHP Andrew Morales. With one away, CF Peter Lavin swatted a solo home run just out of the leaping reach of RF David Washington at the wall, lifting the Drillers into the 1-0 lead.
Morales, though, responded with a quick, scoreless second frame, before Springfield (20-18, 50-58) squared the score in the bottom of the second against RHP Chris Anderson. With two down and the bases empty, Washington crushed a solo home run to left-center field, his first of the night and 11th long-ball of the season, evening it at 1-1.
However, the Drillers powered back in front in the top of the third. After a one-out walk worked by Lavin, 1B Lars Anderson drove a two-run blast to right field, propelling the Drillers ahead, 3-1.
Tulsa stretched the lead further with their third homer of the night in the top of the fourth. With two down, 2B Brandon Trinkwon extended the stanza with a single, followed by a walk from RHP Chris Anderson to put two men on. SS Ronald Torreyes then pulled a three-run shot to left field, swinging the Drillers into the 6-1 lead.
RHP Thomas Lee took over on the mound to retire the final out in the top of the fourth, and then dealt a 1-2-3 top of the fifth. Springfield then started the comeback in the bottom of the fifth. C Alberto Rosario sparked the charge with a single to open the inning, followed by a walk worked by Lee. Both runners advanced on a groundout, before 3B Patrick Wisdom worked a walk to load the bases. LF Anthony Garcia then unloaded the bases with a three-run double to right-center field, bringing in all three runners and making it just a two-run deficit for Springfield, 6-4.
The Cardinals continued to chip away against RHP Deck McGuire in the bottom of the sixth. With one away, Washington struck again, belting his second solo shot of the night, and 12th homer of the year, on top of the Indoor Training Facility in right field, bringing the Cardinals within one run, 6-5.
With Lee’s 2.1-inning scoreless relief outing complete, LHP Ryan Sherriff and RHP Kurt Heyer (W, 4-0) combined to toss the seventh and eighth in scoreless fashion, keeping the Cardinals within just one run.
Springfield then completed the comeback in the bottom of the eighth. With RHP Juan Jaime on the mound, 1B Jonathan Rodriguez worked a walk to start the inning. LHP Ramon Benjamin (L, 0-1) took over next and dealt a quick strikeout, before SS Aledmys Diaz sent a two-run home run just inside the left field foul pole, catapulting the Cardinals into the 7-6 lead.
RHP Ronnie Shaban (S, 4) entered the game for the top of the ninth and worked out of a bases-loaded jam, posting a scoreless final frame to close the 7-6 comeback win for the Cardinals.