Good as Gold: Lancaster Makes Game 1 Statement in Cal League Playoffs
The Rockies High-A affiliate Lancaster made an opening-game statement in the California League best-of-five South Division finals against division champion Rancho Cucamonga on Wednesday night.
This isn't the regular season, anymore.
With a strong start by Brandon Gold and two home runs from Bret Boswell, the JetHawks fashioned an 8-4 victory in the playoff opener, a sharp contrast from the regular season when Lancaster was 12-20 against Rancho Cucamonga, losing five of six games Gold started in that series.
Gold retired the first nine batters he faced, and took an 8-2 lead into the eighth inning, finally departing with one out in the eighth, having allowed four runs, striking out seven and not issuing a walk.
The JetHawks made an early statement, scoring four runs with two outs in the first inning on a two-run home run from from Tyler Nevin, solo home run from Boswell, and an RBI-double by Vince Fernandez. Rancho Cucamonga starter Leo Crawford also gave up a home run to Alan Trejo in the fifth, and RBI-triple by Wes Rogers in the sixth.
Boswell put the JetHawks up 8-2 with a two-out, two-run home run off Dan Jagiello, Boswell's fifth multi-home run game this season, which he split between Lancaster and Low-A Asheville. The second baseman, who was an eighth-round draft choice out of the University of Texas in 2017, hit a combined .296 with 27 home runs and 78 RBI between Asheville, where he played 97 games, and Lancaster, where he played in 30.
After Gold gave up back-to-back home runs with one out in the eighth, reliever Ben Bowden got the call and registered the final five outs of the game.
Left-hander Ty Culbreth will start Game 2 Thursday night in Lancaster. The series shifts to Rancho Cucamonga on Friday for the remaining games.