LAWRENCEVILLE — The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees defeated the Gwinnett Braves 4-1 in Game 2 of the first round of the International League Governor’s Cup Playoffs.
The Yankees scored once in the second inning and twice more in the third to take a quick 3-0 lead. It was enough to send the Yankees back to Moosic, PA., with a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five-game series.
The Yankees first run was a result of two Gwinnett errors. With one out in the second, Kevin Russo reached on a throwing error from Diory Hernandez and later scored on fielding error by Chris Burke. The third-inning runs were a result of two Yankee doubles. Austin Jackson plated Freddy Guzman with a double into the right-field corner. Jackson then scored on Russo’s double to left-center field.
The G-Braves got on the board in the fourth inning but it was the lone run of the night. Gwinnett got three straight singles from Barbaro Canizares, Brandon Jones and Diory Hernandez. Hernandez recorded the RBI with his shot up the middle.
But Scranton/WB pushed the lead back to three in the fifth inning. Juan Miranda plated Reegie Corona, who reached on a one-out double. The score would remain and the Yankees would prevail in their second-straight game at Gwinnett Stadium.
After leaving 10 runners on base in the series opener, Gwinnett again had its chances Thursday. The G-Braves stranded two runners in the fourth and six innings. The G-Braves left the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh and with no out, stranded two more of runners in the bottom of the ninth.
Barbaro Canizares and Diory Hernandez each had a pair of hits in the loss. All eight of the G-Braves’ hits were singles. It was the first time in 10 games, since Aug. 30 at Durham, that Gwinnett didn’t record an extra-base hit.
Yankees’ starter Ivan Nova bested G-Braves’ southpaw Jo-Jo Reyes’ strong performance Thursday. Reyes allowed four runs, three earned, in seven innings but Nova held Gwinnett to the one run in seven innings. Nova improves to 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA in the postseason while Reyes drops to 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA. It was the first time a Gwinnett starter completed seven innings since John Halama did it on Aug. 3 at Columbus.
Gwinnett and Scranton/WB resume play in the five-game series Friday at PNC Field in Moosic, PA. The G-Braves will send RHP Bobby Brownlie (5-2, 4.13 ERA) and the Yankees will counter with LHP Kei Igawa (10-8, 4.15 ERA). First pitch in the third game of the series is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.