Nearly three weeks after opting out of his contract with the Phillies to sign with the New York Yankees and join their 25-man roster, former IronPigs ace Brian Gordon found himself on the mound for the home team in Moosic facing his former teammates on the IronPigs.
Gordon did not disappoint the hometown crowd in his Yankees debut, going five innings in which he allowed just four hits with no runs and no walks with seven strikeouts against the IronPigs.
Gordon is not considered the IL leader in ERA, as he is just under the 0.8 innings pitched per team game played requirement, however his 1.04 ERA in 55 and a third innings pitched is by far the best for any pitcher with any significant body of work on the season. The official best in the IL is Julio Teheran, with a 1.79 ERA in 90 and two-thirds innings pitched.
As Gordon worked his way efficiently through the IronPigs lineup, Tyson Brummett did all he could to keep the game in reach for the IronPigs.
The Yankees first got on the board in the bottom of the second inning, as Brandon Laird hit his third homerun against the IronPigs in 2011, putting the Yankees up 1-0.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Yankees would get going again as Greg Golson struck an RBI triple to plate Doug Bernier, giving the Yankees the 2-0 lead. The Yankees were deprived of their third run however, as Austin Krum failed to execute the bunt on the attempted suicide squeeze with Golson coming in from third. Golson was thrown out for the second out of the inning, and Austin Krum then struck out for the massive break for the IronPigs.
In the top of the sixth with Gordon out of the game, the IronPigs finally got on the board as Brandon Moss struck his fourteenth homerun of the season. The two-run shot off of RHP Josh Schmidt tied the game at two runs apiece, taking Brummett off the hook and making Gordon ineligible for his sixth win in the IL this season.
In the top of the eighth, the IronPigs finally got some succession going at the plate as Pete Orr led off with a single, followed by a walk to Brandon Moss. Jeff Larish failed to execute the sacrifice bunt, however it would not come back to bite the IronPigs as Delwyn Young cleared everything to left field for the three-run go-ahead homerun to make it 5-2 IronPigs.
Justin De Fratus and Michael Schwimer would combine for three and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief to preserve the score and send the IronPigs to the series split that maintained the 3.5 game lead in the IL North that they possessed when they rolled into town on Monday morning.
The IronPigs now travel to Rochester for a three-game set, hoping to further extend their lead in the IL North.