The SeaWolves, paced by a Colt Keith cycle, powered their way past the Harrisburg Senators in an 18-8 thumping on Tuesday night at FNB Field.
Erie jumped all over Harrisburg starter Mitchell Parker in the first, knocking the Senators starter out after he recorded only one out. Trei Cruz led off the game with a double and Keith homered to right with his first of six hits in the game. The home run was his sixth. Wenceel Perez singled while Dillon Dingler and Jake Holton each walked, loading the bases. Andrew Navigato doubled home a pair for a 4-0 lead. Julio Rodriguez singled home one and Erie reloaded the bases on a Ben Malgeri walk. Harrisburg turned to righty Reid Schaller who got the second out of the frame before giving up a bases-clearing triple to Keith to make it 8-0. Keith finished the first inning with five RBIs.
Harrisburg answered against Erie starter Ty Madden in the second when Drew Millas connected on a one-out, two-run home run. The Senators would add a pair of unearned run off of Madden in the second and he left the game after four with a no-decision. He allowed four runs, two earned, on four hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
Keith led off the fourth against Schaller and crushed his second home run of the game and seventh of the season. Later in the frame, Grant Witherspoon belted a solo home run, his sixth. It was his first knock on a four-hit night.
Senators reliever Evan Lee got the first two batters of the fifth before Malgeri doubled, keeping the inning alive for the top of the lineup. Cruz followed the double with an RBI triple. Keith then doubled home Cruz leaving him a needing a single for the cycle. The RBI double made it a 12-4 game.
Erie added two in the sixth, again off of Lee when Jake Holton singled home a run and Rodriguez hit into a fielder’s choice, putting Erie up by 10.
In the top of the seventh, Keith led off against reliver Carlos Romero and singled, completing the cycle. It was Erie first cycle since May 22, 2012 when Tony Plagman accomplished the feat at UPMC Park. He’s the fourth Erie batter to hit for the cycle since 2005 (Juan Francia – ’05, Casper Wells – ’08). Also in the seventh, Dingler clubbed a two-run home run, his fourth.
Jake Higginbotham (1-1) earned the win hurling two scoreless frames in relief.
Parker (2-3) took the loss for Harrisburg.
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