New Hampshire Hardball

Smith, Fisher Cats win in 11

MANCHESTER — Blue Jays No. 7 prospect Kevin Smith  singled with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 11th inning as the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays Double-A affiliate) rallied for a 5-4 win over the Binghamton Rumble Ponies (New York Mets) Friday night at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium.

Key Performers: Smith’s hit, his first of the game, completed a two-run rally after the Rumble Ponies had taken the lead in the top of the 11th.

Forrest Wall tied the game with a single in the bottom of the 11th, scoring Brock Lundquist.

Santiago Espinal , who hit in the clean-up spot, had two singles, as did New Hampshire’s lead-off hitter Josh Palacios and catcher Ryan Hissey .

How It Happened: 

Binghamton took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third, knocking Fisher Cats starter Hector Perez out of the game in the process. Andres Gimenez, the No. 2 prospect in the Mets’ system, picked up a triple. Sam Haggerty followed with a run-scoring double to make it 1-0. After a walk to Patrick MazeikaWill Toffey singled in the second run.

The Fisher Cats drew even in the bottom of the third inning. Chad Spanberger drew a two-out walk to start the rally. Santiago Espinal blooped a single to right field and then Brock Lundquist was hit by a pitch. With the bases jammed, Kacy Clemens laced a two-run single to left field to tie the game at 2-2.

New Hampshire took its first lead of the season in the bottom of the seventh inning. After loading the bases on a walk, a hit batter and a single, Brandon Grudzielanek scored on a wild pitch for a 3-2 lead.

The Rumble Ponies tied the game in the top of the eighth inning. Haggerty tripled and scored on a groundout by Patrick Mazeika.

The Fisher Cats threatened in the bottom of the ninth inning. Hissey singled and advanced to third on a stolen base and error, but back-to-back strikeouts took the contest to extras.

After Binghamton scored a run in the top of the 11th on a single by Mike Paez, the Fisher Cats rallied against reliever Adonis Uceta. Lundquist advanced to third on a groundout, and scored the tying run on Wall’s single. Hissey then singled and Palacios walked to load the bases. Smith drilled his walk-off single to right center for his first Double-A RBI.

Notes: New Hampshire starter Hector Perez was with the Fisher Cats during the drive to the 2018 EL Championship after coming over in the Roberto Osuna trade between the Blue Jays and Astros. He lasted 2.1 innings and collected four strikeouts. … Reliever Francisco Rios  worked 3.2 scoreless innings in relief for the Fisher Cats. Jake Fishman and Bryan Baker  followed. Kirby Snead  (1-0) finished up for the win. … Binghamton’s starter Chris Mazza allowed two runs on five hits over his six innings. … The Fisher Cats went 6-5 in extra innings last year, the first season with the modified rules that start the extra frames with a runner at second base.

Up Next: The Fisher Cats and Rumble Ponies will play again on Saturday at 6:35 p.m. A Country Music Atlas Fireworks Show will follow the contest. The scheduled starting pitchers are RHP Mike Gibbons for Binghamton and LHP Zach Logue  for New Hampshire. For ticket information, visit

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