STRASBURG, Va. — Tyler McDonald’s three-run homer proved to be the difference in Strasburg’s 4-3 playoff win over Charles Town on Monday. The one-run win sent the Express to the Valley Baseball League semifinals and sent the Cannons to the sidelines. The Express won the best-of-three series two games to none.
The game—and season—ended on an odd note for Charles Town. In the top of the ninth, Emmanuel Marrero batted with two outs and nobody on base. The Cannons trailed by a run.
Marrero lined a hit toward right-center that carried on the ground all the way to the fence. The Charles Town shortstop easily reached second and kept on running toward third. A relay throw toward third from an Express infielder sailed over the head of the Strasburg third baseman. After sliding, Marrero scrambled to his feet and moved toward home. But the errant throw caromed off a dugout fence and bounced right back to the Strasburg third baseman who was able to tag Marrero— ending the game—before he could get back to the base.
McDonald’s three-run homer in the fifth came off Cannons’ starter, David Rumsey, and quickly reversed a 2-1 Charles Town lead.
Logan Boyd replaced Rumsey in the inning and was able to blank the Express in his 3.2 innings of work.
Strasburg starter Ashton Fronsoe worked six innings and got credit for the win. Adam Emerson, Evan Kirsch and Daniel Bridgeman each went one inning in closing out the stay-alive win for the Express.
Cody Hoffner and Matthew Gandy drove in runs for the Cannons. Marrero had three of Charles Town’s seven hits. Gandy, playing in his second game of the season for the Cannons, had two hits.
Cameron Johnson was 3-for-5 for the Express and Jordan Tarsovich, the Valley League’s leading hitter, walked four times including three intentional passes.
Charles Town’s season closes and Strasburg moved to the playoff semifinals against the survivor of the Woodstock vs. Aldie series that was tied at 1-1 through Monday’s game.