Ducks lose to Somerset on walk-off home run
BRIDGEWATER, N.J. -- The tables were turned on the Long Island Ducks in the third game of the Atlantic League Championship Series Friday night. The Ducks won the first two games of the best-of-five series with late hits. Friday night, it was Somerset's turn.
The Patriots never led until Cory Aldridge hit his third home run of the game in the 10th inning to give Somerset a dramatic 5-4 win. The Patriots scored all of their runs on solo homers, capped by Aldridge's no-doubt blast to rightfield off reliever Erick Threets.
"Obviously, the feeling is disappointment," Ducks manager Kevin Baez said. "It was a good game and they came out on top at the end."
Each of the first three games has been decided by one run. Game 4 will be played at Somerset Saturday night at 7. If Game 5 is needed, it will be played at Somerset Sunday at 5:05 p.m.
"I just said to the guys, 'Keep your heads up and come back tomorrow and get after it,' " Baez said. "We're still in a good position."
Baez spoke in a hallway outside the Ducks' clubhouse, where tarps lined the floor but didn't need to be hung to protect the lockers from a champagne celebration.
The Ducks were six outs from sweeping the series before Yunesky Sanchez greeted Jared Lansford with a solo home run over everything in left-center to tie the score at 4 in the eighth.
The Ducks' Bill Hall led off the second with a double and scored on a double by Adam Bailey. Ramon Castro singled for a 2-0 lead. Hall scored on a sacrifice fly by Castro in the fourth for a 3-0 lead.
Bob Zimmermann held the Patriots hitless for the first three innings, but Aldridge launched a solo homer off the scoreboard in right in the fourth to make it 3-1.
With the bases loaded and none out in the fifth, Josh Barfield struck out swinging and Bryant Nelson grounded into a double play.
"It was huge," Baez said. "Bases loaded, nobody out with your 2-3-4 hitters up, usually you feel pretty good about it. Their guy made quality pitches and he got out of the jam."
Aldridge hit his second homer in the sixth. Barfield's seventh-inning single made it 4-2, but Adam Donachie homered off Josh Lansford in the seventh and Sanchez tied it with his eighth-inning homer.