ASHEVILLE, NC – The Asheville Tourists closed out their four-game series with the Greenville Drive in dramatic fashion Sunday afternoon, taking a back-and-forth contest 5-4 at McCormick Field. Jordan Pacheco drove in four runs for the Tourists, giving him ten RBI for the four-game series, and 47 on the year. Asheville starter Juan Nicasio pitched well enough to earn the win, but got his fourth no-decision instead.
The Drive opened the scoring in the top of the first when Zach Gentile led off with a base hit. Jered Stanley worked a one-out walk, and Ty Weeden drove a double into right field, plating Gentile for the first run of the game. Mitch Dening followed with a single of his own, bringing Stanley in to score and making it 2-0 Greenville.
Asheville answered back with a run in their half of the first, when Pacheco brought home Scott Robinson with a one-out single, cutting the Drive lead to 2-1. The Tourists pushed across another run to tie the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the third when Pacheco beat out a potential double play for an RBI fielder’s choice and his second run driven in of the game.
Nicasio worked four straight scoreless innings after the top of the first, finishing with 5.1 innings, allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks while striking out 8 batters.
The Tourists took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth frame on an RBI sacrifice fly by Jimmy Cesario that scored David Christensen from third base.
Greenville tied it up at 3-3 in the top of the eighth inning against reliever Kurt Yacko on a sacrifice fly by first baseman Jered Stanley.
The Tourists brought in Tyler Trice to work the top of the ninth, and Trice retired the first two batters he faced before Ryan Dent blasted a solo homerun over the wall in left field to give the Drive a 4-3 lead.
Asheville came up in the bottom of the ninth trailing by a run, and Beau Seabury reached base to lead off on an error by pitcher Mike Lee. Carlos Martinez struck out, but Scott Robinson lined a single into center field, putting runners on first and second. Delta Cleary followed by drawing a walk to load the bases for the Tourists MVP, Pacheco, with one out. Pacheco waited on an off-speed pitch and blasted a line drive into the gap in right center for a walk-off, two-run single. Seabury and Robinson came around to score on the play, giving Asheville a series victory with a 5-4 win.
The Tourists (3-1) take on the Savannah Sand Gnats (2-1) in Savannah after an off day on Monday. Asheville will send RHP Dan Houston (2-6, 4.39) to the mound for game one in Savannah Tuesday night. You can listen to Tuesday’s game and all 140 Asheville Tourists games live on 100.7 WRES FM or streaming online at www.theashevilletourists.com.