The Ducks are still in first place, and they have the York Revolution’s bullpen to thank for it. After struggling to get a big hit early, the Ducks got plenty of them late — rallying from a four-run deficit to top York, 6-5, in front of 4,382 fans at Bethpage Ballpark in Central Islip on Sunday.
The Ducks (21-11) remain atop the Atlantic League’s Liberty Division.
Taylor Ard’s walk-off RBI single off reliever Junior Rincon with no outs in the ninth drove in Daniel Fields, who had stolen third earlier in Ard’s at-bat. Ducks reliever Logan Ondrusek struck out Luis Cruz with a runner on third to end the top of the ninth with the score tied.
“He threw me all breaking balls there,” Ard said. “I saw one earlier in the count, which was a good pitch to hit, but I took it to let Fields steal that bag at third. Then he left another one up and I was able to stay on it and shoot it to rightfield.”
Ondrusek said of getting out of the ninth-inning jam: “Right there I’m thinking, ‘Just don’t let the guy in.’ It’s a little more pressure because a wild pitch could score him, but I have faith in Dioner Navarro behind the dish to block something in the dirt. We worked pretty well together tonight.”
The Ducks scored three runs in the seventh and one in the eighth to erase a 5-1 deficit. David Washington’s sacrifice fly drove in Miles Williams with one out in the bottom of the eighth to tie it at 5.
Scoring the tying run represented a bit of redemption for Williams, whose two misplays in the field helped dig the Ducks’ early hole.
The misplays did nothing to help Ducks starter Hector Silvestre, who has yet to go five innings since entering the rotation July 29. Despite looking strong at times, the lefty went 4 1/3 innings, allowed five runs and seven hits, walked three and struck out one.
The Ducks woke up with a three-run seventh to cut their deficit to 5-4. Fields’ two-run single with one out cut York’s lead to 5-3 and Lew Ford followed with a fielder’s choice to drive in David Washington.