Originally created 08/12/01

Jackets use late rally to take win



Anthony Sclafani was in the other dugout when the Augusta GreenJackets were running away with a first-half Southern Division title.

So forgive him for being unfamiliar with the performance the Jackets gave Saturday in a 5-4 victory over the Capital City Bombers.

After all, Sclafani was pitching for the Macon Braves when the Jackets were gaining their reputation as the best ninth-inning team in the South Atlantic League.

"I heard from the guys that they won a lot of games this way in the first half," said Sclafani, who joined the Jackets last week, completing an earlier trade between the Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves. "It was good to be a part of a win like this one."

The Jackets rallied for two runs in their final at-bat off Bombers reliever Aaron Hee (5-3) to win for the third time in four games.

Melvin Dorta won it when he beat out a high chopper behind second base, diving headfirst into first base to edge second baseman Carlos Castillo's throw as Antron Seiber crossed home plate with the winning run.

"It's been a long time since we've won a game like that," Jackets manager Mike Boulanger said. "It reminded me of the way we were in the first half. I'm happy for our guys. It pumped me up, and I know they're excited, too."

After the Jackets rallied from a 3-1 deficit with a two-run third inning, the Bombers regained the lead, 4-3, when No. 8 hitter Josh Perich belted a solo home run to right-center in the seventh off Sclafani.

But aside from the homer, Sclafani got the job done.

He worked four solid innings in relief of starter Felix Villegas, allowing the lone run on three hits with a walk and four strikeouts to win his first game as a Jacket and run his record to 2-1.

Villegas also pitched well in his third start, charged with two earned runs on four hits in five innings. He also struck out four and walked one.

"Sclafani did a nice job, and I though Villegas also pitched well," Boulanger said.

Third baseman Jon Anderson, who missed the past 19 games with a strained back, also had a good night, going 2-for-3 with a stolen base.

With his club trailing by one run in the ninth, Boulanger sent Tony Blanco in to pinch-hit for Anderson.

Blanco delivered with a one-out single and was replaced by pinch-runner Julio Guerrero at first.

Guerrero eventually scored the tying run on a wild pitch, and Dorta won it with a two-out infield single that scored Seiber with the winning run.

GAME REPORT

Jackets 5, Bombers 4

Player of the game: Melvin Dorta went 2-for-4 including the game-winning RBI-single in the ninth.

Turning point: The Jackets rallied for two runs in the ninth, capped by Melvin Dorta beating out an infield single with two outs, allowing Antron Seiber to score the winning run.

Ballpark fun: Augusta Lynx general manager Mike Pierson took in the ballgame and won a valuable soft-toss baseball.

Today's game: Capital City Bombers (27-21) vs. Augusta GreenJackets (21-28), 7:15 p.m.

Probable starters: Capital City - RHP Bob Keppel (5-6, 3.13); Augusta - RHP Mat Thompson 8-9, 3.02).

Reach Rob Mueller at (706) 823-3425 or robm99@hotmail.com.