Manchester, NH (WBNG Binghamton) Rafael Montero fired six scoreless innings to the lead the Binghamton Mets to a 3-0 victory over the New Hampshire Fisher Cats on Saturday afternoon at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium. The bullpen provided three blank innings of relief for Binghamton’s first shutout victory of the season.
Double plays kept the Binghamton Mets from getting on the board early in the game against Fisher Cats starter Marcus Walden. Josh Rodriguez rolled into an inning-ending twin-killing in the first and ended a bases-loaded threat with another in the third. The trend continued in the fourth when Francisco Pena grounded into a frame-ending double play with two men aboard.
Facing the Fisher Cats for his second straight game, Rafael Montero breezed through his fourth Double-A appearance. The righty surrendered just four hits and struck out six. Montero allowed just one runner to reach second and prevented any Fisher Cat from reaching third, never facing more than four batters in any inning.
Wilfredo Tovar helped Binghamton avoid another double play in the fifth by shooting a one-out double down the third base line. Darrell Ceciliani brought him home two batters later with an RBI single to left, giving the B-Mets a one-run lead.
Given the advantage, Montero added two more shutout innings, working around a single in the fifth and a fielding error in the sixth to end his day.
Jack Leathersich took over in the seventh and pitched himself into trouble by issuing two walks. The southpaw pitched his way out of the jam with three strikeouts, fanning Amadeo Zazueta to end the threat. He returned for the eighth and posted a perfect frame.
Cory Vaughn added some much-needed insurance for Binghamton in the eighth against reliever Matt Wright. With a runner on the third, the outfielder blasted a 3-2 offering over the left field wall for his second home run in as many games.
Jeff Walters entered in the ninth and allowed the tying run to reach the plate after surrendering a single and a walk, but induced Jack Murphy to fly out to left to end the game.
Montero (3-0) collected his third straight win, allowing just four hits over six innings of work. Walden (0-3) was tagged for nine hits and struck out one in the losing effort. Walters racked up his league-leading fifth save.
The B-Mets (9-7) complete their four-game series in Manchester on Sunday afternoon at 1:35 PM. RHP Logan Verrett (2-0, 2.75) gets the nod for the B-Mets against RHP Deck McGuire (1-1, 3.06).
POSTGAME NOTES: Vaughn’s blast was this third of the year and second multi-run round-tripper…Walters is 5-for-5 in save chances to start the season…Binghamton is now 9-0 when leading after seven innings