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HomeNewsArchivesYankees Conquer Monarchs 7-1 in Double-A Season Opener

Yankees Conquer Monarchs 7-1 in Double-A Season Opener

March 29, 2009 — Leroy "Dedo" Simmonds scattered five hits while striking out eight batters in pitching the Yankees to a 7-1 opening-day victory Saturday night over the Monarchs in the Raphael "Tight Shoes" Jackson Double-A baseball league.
Simmonds showed no ill effects from the "possessed lawnmower" accident he suffered almost two years ago, and looked to be just about all the way back with his dominant performance on the mound. The Yankees scored four runs in the top of the sixth to break open what had been a pitching duel to that point between Simmonds and Monarchs starting pitcher Khalid Mathews. Mathews, however, appeared to tire some in the sixth, and the Yankees were able to take advantage.
The game, played at the D.C. Canegata baseball field, was scoreless over the first three innings as both starting pitchers had dominating stuff in the early goings. Mathews was not as overpowering as Simmonds, but his pitching was just as effective.
The Yankees finally broke the scoreless tie in the top of the fourth when McKeel Rogers reached on a base on ball, stole second, then scored on Eric Perez's RBI single. The Monarchs were equal to the task in the bottom of the inning as they knotted the game at one in the bottom of the inning on Michael Lombardi's RBI single. The hit scored Dwayne Brannigan, who had gotten on after getting hit by a pitch.
After a scoreless fifth inning, the Yankees scored all the runs they would need in the top of the sixth inning. Rodgers led off the inning with a towering home run to give his team the lead for good. After an RBI ground out by Germaine Lynch, a bases-loaded walk to Harvey and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Shakeel Newton, the Yanks were suddenly up by four runs at 5-1. Meanwhile, Simmonds was still cruising along and he would hold the Monarchs scoreless the rest of the way.
The Yankees would add two unearned runs in the top of the seventh inning to set the final score at 7-1 as the game was called after the seventh because of time constraints.
Simmonds got the win on the hill for the Yankees, while Mathews picked up the loss. Top hitters for the Yankees were Rodgers, 2 for 3 with a home run and one RBI; Harvey, 1 for 1 with an RBI; and Newton, 2 for 3 with an RBI. For the Monarchs, Lombardi went 1 for 3 with an RBI and Kenny Milligan and Conrad Prevost both went 1 for 2.
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