NEW BRITAIN - After falling in 11 innings on Friday night, the New Britain Bees evened up their series against the visiting Southern Maryland Blue Crabs with a 4-1 victory on Saturday evening at New Britain Stadium.
Kyle Simon, who led the Atlantic League in ERA while pitching for the Bees last year, pitched his third nine-inning game of the season and second complete game (one went into extra innings). He scattered seven hits and a walk while striking out eight batters, the most in any game by a New Britain pitcher this season.
Simon improved to 6-6 for the season with a 4.24 ERA, and now leads the league in wins - with two more than anyone else - and strikeouts (54, 11 more than anyone else). He has pitched in seven or more innings in each of his last five starts.
Jovan Rosa provided the key blow for New Britain, hitting a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth inning to put the Bees ahead 3-1. James Skelton also scored on the play after singling to lead off the inning.
New Britain continued the rally after Rosa’s home run, despite the next two batters making outs. Jordan Hinshaw and Michael Crouse hit back-to-back singles to set the stage for Jamar Walton, who delivered the two-out RBI base knock for a 4-1 lead.
Southern Maryland got on the scoreboard first, as Zach Wilson belted a two-out solo home run in the first inning.
New Britain soon tied it in the bottom of the frame, however, as Yusuke Kajimoto singled to start the inning and Skelton followed with an RBI double to left field.
Kajimoto (2-for-4) inproved his batting average to .298 for the season
Drew Hayes (4-4) took the loss for the Blue Crabs.
Though they didn’t trail for long, the win was the Bees’ 12th come from behind victory of the season.
Walton had two hits in the game and has now recorded multiple hits in five straight contests.