The Ducks spent the offseason on a quest to find a better bullpen. On opening night, that bullpen lost the strike zone. Four eighth-inning walks doomed the Ducks on Friday night as they dropped the season opener to the York Revolution, 5-3, in front of 5,268 fans at Fairfield Properties Ballpark in Central Islip.

Rocky Point native Frank Moscatiello began the fateful top of the eighth, carrying with him a 3-2 lead and a chance to build a bridge to Ducks closer Tyler Webb. But Moscatiello’s control was off from the start, with the 26-year-old allowing a leadoff single to Zach Racusin and then making a high throw on a pickoff attempt to allow him to reach second.  Moscatiello then walked the next two hitters on a combined nine pitches before being pulled without recording an out.

“I think it was just a little bit of adrenaline,” Moscatiello said. “I just had one of those days. I’m not used to walking that many guys and not doing my job. I’m not happy about it, but it does happen. I have to get used to a big crowd, coming into big situations, and getting the job done. Tonight’s not who I am. I want to make that known. I just have to bounce back….I will come back stronger.”

Chad Hockin replaced Moscatiello and didn’t faremuch better. He yielded two straight bases-loaded walks, handing York a newly-minted 4-3 lead. The Revolution added another run on Paul Mondesi’s RBI single off Cody Beckman. 

“Tough eighth inning. I was counting on those guys,”  Ducks manager Wally Backman said. “They just didn’t get the job done in the eighth. We left the bases loaded [twice], so it’s not all their faults.”

The Ducks had one more chance in the ninth, but former Red Sox infielder Deven Marrero struck out with the tying run on second.

The Ducks fell behind 1-0 in the second inning, but tied it in the bottom half on an RBI single from Marrero. Ducks centerfielder Dustin Woodcock homered to lead off the fourth, giving the Ducks a 2-1 lead. After York tied the score in the sixth, the Ducks took a 3-2 lead in the bottom half on an RBI double from Rusney Castillo, a former Red Sox outfielder.

Ducks starter Brett Kennedy, who pitched for the Padres in 2018, was very good in his Long Island debut. He yielded four hits, struck out four, and didn’t allow an earned run in four innings.  

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