Wick sets home run mark after 19 games

From staff reports

STATE COLLEGE – In his 19th game with the State College Spikes, Rowan Wick broke the club’s single-season home-run record with his 11th blast of the season, and the Spikes defeated the Batavia Muckdogs, 9-3, on Wednesday night at Dwyer Stadium.

Wick’s three-run shot in the eighth inning broke the record set by David Washington, who hit 10 home runs over the 72 regular season games he played in just last year. Prior to Washington, no Spike had hit more than eight home runs in a year.

The North Vancouver, BC, Canada, native took the first pitch he saw from Batavia (12-7) reliever Connor Overton deep over the right-field wall. It was Wick’s third home run of the year against the Muckdogs, and his second of the year at Dwyer Stadium.

Earlier on Wednesday, Wick received the St. Louis Cardinals’ Minor League Player of the Month award for June. The Spikes slugger was also named New York-Penn League Player of the Week for the week ending June 22.

Wick’s record-breaking effort spearheaded a big night for the Spikes (12-7), who jumped back into a tie for the NYPL Pinckney Division lead with the win. Alex De Leon hit his fifth home run of the season, and his fourth at Dwyer Stadium, in the fifth inning. De Leon’s two-run dinger scored Nick Thompson and made the score 5-2.

Thompson went 2-for-3 with a double and scored three State College runs. Collin Radack also collected a pair of hits with an RBI double for the Spikes.

Jeff Rauh (1-0) earned his first win of the year for State College with 1 2/3 scoreless innings of middle relief. Rauh gave up one hit and one walk while striking out two batters in the victory.

Spikes starter Fernando Baez fell two outs shy of the requirement for a win, as he allowed two runs, one earned, on two hits and three walks over 4 1/3 innings. Baez struck out five batters. Jacob Booden tossed two shutout frames of relief, striking out four over the seventh and eighth innings.

Batavia starter Ben Holmes (0-1), who made his professional debut on Wednesday, took the loss after allowing two runs on five hits over the first two innings. Holmes, the Marlins’ ninth-round draft choice this year, also recorded three strikeouts.

Ryan Cranmer and Mason Davis each produced a solo home run for the Muckdogs. Cramner’s came in the fifth inning, while Davis completed the scoring with his shot in the ninth.

Thursday, the Spikes and Muckdogs complete their three-game series at Dwyer Stadium with a 7:05 rubber match. State College will send right-hander Daniel Poncedeleon (1-0), the Cardinals’ 2014 ninth-round draft choice, to the mound. Batavia is slated to start with right-hander Jorgan Cavanerio (1-0) on the hill. The winner of Thursday’s game will take sole possession of first place in the Pinckney Division.