Roof rallies Sea Dogs by Mets in ninth

Posted July 22, 2014, at 11 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — The Portland Sea Dogs scored three runs in the third, but saved the best for last and used a run in the bottom half of the ninth to down the Binghamton Mets 4-3 Tuesday night.

The fifth walk-off win of the season sends the Sea Dogs (66-37) to a 12-8 record over the Mets and a 35-15 record at Hadlock Field.

Portland’s Pete Ruiz tossed a perfect top half of the ninth before giving way to the offense in the bottom half.

Jon Velasquez trotted back out for his second full inning of work and retired the first man he faced in the ninth. Blake Swihart shot a single to right field with one down and set the table for Jonathan Roof.

Roof was inserted into the game as a pinch runner for Ryan Lavarnway in the seventh and stepped in for his first plate appearance in the ninth. The designated hitter swung at the first pitch and crushed a ball off the Maine Monster and Swihart sprinted around the bases, scoring the winning run.

Ruiz (2-0) earned the win with two scoreless innings, in which he allowed a hit, walked one, and struck out two.

Binghamton was silenced over the first two innings by Luis Diaz, but jumped on the board first with a run in the third. Travis Taijeron hit a leadoff single and moved to third after a two-out single and walk. Diaz was dealing to Dustin Lawley, but threw a wild pitch and Taijeron scampered home.

The Sea Dogs couldn’t get a handle on Binghamton’s Rainy Lara until the fourth, when they plated three. Lavarnway stepped in with one out and tied the game at 1-1 with a solo shot to the opposite field, his first on rehab and third overall this season.

Sean Coyle followed the blast with a single to center and moved to third on Stefan Welch’s single with two down. Shannon Wilkerson stroked a single to left-center, which plated the duo and gave Portland the 3-1 lead.

The Mets came into the game with an Eastern League-high 96 home runs and added another two in the fifth, tying it at 3-3. Taijeron crushed the first pitch of the inning out of Hadlock for the first solo shot and Dilson Herrera capped off the inning and tied the game with a two-out, two-strike blast over the Maine Monster.

Diaz and Lara would not factor into the decisions for their respective clubs. Lara pitched 5 1/3 innings and gave up the three runs on six hits, a walk and four strikeouts. Diaz bested the B-Mets starter and picked up a quality start, tossing seven and allowing the three runs on five hits; he walked one and struck out seven.

 

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