(April 26) -- With 2017 championship vibes in the air, the York Revolution opened their 2018 season with a thrilling 4-3 win over the Lancaster Barnstormers on Thursday night at PeoplesBank Park to kick off the Atlantic League season.
Jay Gause, who won 10 games for the Revs last season, got the ball as the team’s Opening Night starter and worked a scoreless top of the first inning. In the bottom of the first, Jared Mitchell opened the scoring in a big way, launching a solo home run to right-center off Lancaster starter Joe Gardner to put the Revs up 1-0.
York didn’t hold that lead for long though, as Darian Sandford tagged Gause for a two-out, two-run double to right-center field in the top of the second. Sandford later scored on a wild pitch to give the Barnstormers a 3-1 lead.
Gardner dominated after allowing the leadoff homer to Mitchell and cruised through his next two innings of work, allowing just one more base runner until the fourth inning.
Things got interesting in the bottom of the fourth when Zach Wilson hit a sky-high fly ball to left field that dropped in front of Trayvon Robinson, who lost the ball in the lights. Wilson pulled into second base with a double, moving Michael Burgess, who walked in the previous at-bat, to third base.
Rubi Silva was the next batter and ended up striking out in a controversial at-bat in which the pitch before the strikeout appeared to hit Silva, but was ruled foul after also contacting his bat. The sequence ended up not costing the Revs because Ryan Dent followed the strikeout with a three-run homer run to center field on the first pitch he saw to give the Revs a 4-3 lead that they would hold the rest of the way.
After Joe Van Meter and Frank DeJiulio Jr. combined for three scoreless innings in relief of Gause, Robert Carson took over in the eighth and worked out of a first-and-third, no-out jam.
Pinch-hitter Ryan Casteel singled to lead off the eighth, followed by a single from Robinson. Keenyn Walker, pinch-running for Casteel, stole third to put runners at the corners. Carson got the next batter, Anderson De La Rosa, to ground into a double-play ball on which Walker hesitated to break for the plate and ended up staying at third. Carson retired Vladimir Frias on a ground out to end the inning.
Still holding a one-run lead in the ninth, Carson gave up a leadoff single to Rico Noel who tried to steal second base but was thrown out by York catcher Tyler Clark for the first out. Sandford walked and was also promptly caught stealing, this time on a pickoff move by Carson, relayed from Wilson at first base to Casilla covering second. Carson got Tyler Bortnick to fly out to end the game on a ball that Silva ran down toward the left field line.
Van Meter (1-0) earned the win for York with two shutout innings in relief while Gardner (0-1) suffered the loss for Lancaster. Carson picked up the save, recording the final six outs of the game with help from his defense.
Gause went four innings for the Revs, giving up four hits and just the three second-inning runs. The right-hander struck out two batters, and also walked two and hit a batter. Gardner finished the night after five innings, allowing four runs on four hits with seven strikeouts for the Barnstormers.
The Revs continue their four-game series with the Barnstormers on Friday night at 6:30 p.m. Left-hander Ross Detwiler will start for the Revs while the Barnstormers will give the ball to right-hander Jonathan Albaladejo. The night features a Championship Pennant Giveaway to the first 1,500 fans. Tickets are on sale at YorkRevolution.com, (717) 801-HITS, and in-person at the York Revolution Ticket Office.