Caras gives Generals 7-6 walk-off win over Lumberjacks
By Joshua Gingrich
Waynesboro Generals’ first baseman Kasey Caras strode to the plate with the bases loaded and nobody out in the bottom of the tenth against the Covington Lumberjacks last night. With the game tied at six, all he had to do was get it past the drawn-in infielders and it would give the Generals the win.
Caras delivered, lining a 3-2 pitch into left field for a single, handing the Generals the 7-6 victory.
The Lumberjacks hopped out to an early lead, scoring two in the top of the first. Waynesboro then scored five unanswered — one in the first, one in the second, and three in the fifth. Covington cut the lead to two in the top of the seventh, but the Generals got the run back in the bottom of the eighth.
In the top of the ninth, Waynesboro pitcher Peyton Ricko walked the leadoff man and then gave up a single, bringing the potential tying run to the plate in Covington center fielder Joshua Rodriguez. Rodriguez hit a three-run homer, tying the game at six apiece.
Before this season, the Valley Baseball League adapted the MLB rule of a runner on second base leading off each extra inning. Waynesboro Generals pitcher Orlando Hernandez, who finished the top of the ninth, was called on to attempt to strand Covington’s runner. Hernandez, the son of the former MLB pitcher of the same name, struck out the first two batters and induced a groundout to keep the game tied.
In the bottom of the ninth, a pair of walks loaded the bases before Karas stepped to the plate and won the game. Hernandez was awarded the win for his two innings of scoreless pitching.
Waynesboro second baseman Tyler Borges went 2-for-5 with two runs scored and one RBI. For the Lumberjacks, left fielder Will Hudler went 3-for-4 with two runs scored.
The win was Waynesboro’s second home win of the season, and both have come on walk-offs. On June 5 against the Harrisonburg Turks, catcher Garrett Bogart hit a walk-off grand slam to give the Generals a 10-9 victory.
The Lumberjacks (3-6) play at the Staunton Braves (4-8) tonight at 7:30 p.m. The Generals (6-5) are off today and stay at home to battle the Braves tomorrow night at 7 p.m.