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Yard Goats rally in eighth to beat Patriots

Gabriel Hughes, the first round selection of the Colorado Rockies in 2022, made his Eastern League debut with the Yard Goats on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy Hartford Yard Goats)

HARTFORD, June 7, 2023 — In front of the sixth straight sellout crowd at Dunkin’ Park, the Hartford Yard Goats came from behind to pick up a 5-4 Eastern League victory on Wednesday night over the Somerset Patriots.

A four-run rally in the eighth inning, which included Bret Boswell’s second home run of the game, and an RBI single by Eddy Diaz propelled the Yard Goats (24-28) to the victory. Boswell is now tied with Grant Lavigne for second on the Hartford roster with six home runs this season.

Hartford’s Gabriel Hughes, the first round draft pick of the parent Colorado Rockies in 2022, allowed just two hits in the first four innings of work in his Eastern League debut. He allowed three runs and five hits in five innings. The Gonzaga product struck out five of the first 12 Patriots he faced.

Hughes looked confident from the jump in his first look at Double-A baseball, retiring six out of the first seven batters he faced including three punchouts.

By way of back-to-back singles and an RBI groundout by Trey Sweeney, Somerset snatched the early 1-0 advantage in the third inning. Hartford put pressure on Patriots’ starter Gray Fenter in the third and fourth innings highlighted by Boswell’s 10th double of the season, and Jack Blomgren’s first hit of his 2023 campaign.

Fenter allowed just one run in 5.2 innings pitched while punching out a season-high eight batters in the process.

In the fifth inning, Somerset tacked on two runs to its lead, featuring centerfielder Jeisson Rosario who extended the Patriots’ lead with his third solo home run of the season.

It did not take long for the Yard Goats to respond and cut the lead to 3-1 as Boswell blasted a home run over the right field wall to lead off the bottom of the fifth inning. It was his fifth home run of the season.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, the Hartford bats came alive.

The Yard Goats scored four runs with two outs which started by way of a Braxton Fulford walk. Boswell then launched his second home run of the night into the right field seats to tie the game at 3-3.

Diaz ripped a line drive RBI single off Somerset reliever Tanner Myatt to score Blomgren from second, who reached through a hit-by-pitch and a stolen base. Back-to-back walks set the stage for Hunter Goodman, who brought Diaz home via his 55th hit of the campaign to boost the lead to 5-3.

Yard Goats reliever Dugan Darnell toed the rubber in the bottom of the ninth, striking out two to secure the one-run victory on Wednesday night.

Hartford 5, Somerset 4
At Hartford
Somerset (30-22)            001  020  001  — 4-10-1
Hartford (24-28)              000  010  04x  — 5-8-2
Fenter, Watson (6), Myatt (9), Wilson (9) and Gasper; Hughes, Jones (6), Kitchen (7), Darnell (9) and Fulford; WP: Kitchen (3-2), LP: Myatt (2-1), Save: Darnell (5); 2B: Wells (S), Boswell (H); HR: Boswell (H) 2, Rosario (S)

Since 2009, the Collinsville Press has been providing award-winning coverage of sports and news in the Farmington Valley and across Connecticut.

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