LITTLE FALLS, N.J. - The RailCats finished off a 3-0 victory in Saturday's suspended game and then beat the Jackals 9-6 on Sunday afternoon to take three out of four in the series. The RailCats (28-34) are now within seven games of first-place Wichita in the American Association Central.
The 'Cats went 7-4 on their Can-Am road trip, and will have an off day on Monday before beginning a six-game homestand at U. S. Steel Yard on Tuesday.
Chris Allen pitched a perfect seventh inning to pick up his sixth save in game two of Saturday's doubleheader, which had been suspended in favor of fireworks the previous night and resumed Sunday afternoon.
In that ballgame, Mike Massaro singled and came around to score on a wild pitch in the first inning. Brian Kolb hit a sac fly in fourth and Mike Rohde followed with an RBI double to make it 3-0. RailCats starter Jon Gulbransen (1-0) threw five scoreless innings and struck out six.
The RailCats jumped on Jackals starter Craig Clark in the regularly-scheduled Sunday game. The first five RailCats hit singles in the first inning, with runs scoring on hits by Mike Massaro and Mike Rohde as the 'Cats took a 2-0 lead. The RailCats have scored in the first inning of five straight games.
Adam Klein walked to lead off the third and Mike Massaro singled to put runners on the corners. Mike Coles then hit a three-run bomb to left-center field, increasing the lead to 5-0.
The Jackals loaded the bases in the fourth inning against RailCats starter Morgan Coombs. With two out, Carlos Guzman singled to shallow center to score Matt Cusick, but 'Cats second baseman Chris Carrara threw out Francisco Carraballo trying to score from second to end the inning.
Morgan Coombs (4-5) held the Jackals to a run in six innings and struck out six in his second straight quality start.
Massaro led off the seventh with an infield single and moved to third on another hit by Coles. Coles stole second and on a throwing error by Jackals catcher Chris Henderson, Massaro scored and Coles moved to third. Mike Rohde hit a sac fly to drive in Coles. With two out, Matt Forgatch hit a two-run shot to center to make it a 9-1 advantage. It was his fourth homer this season and third as a RailCat.
The Jackals made things interesting starting in the eighth inning. Matt Cusick hit a two-run double and they walked in a pair of runs to cut the 'Cats lead to 9-5. The first three batters of the ninth reached, including an RBI single by Francisco Carraballo. They had the winning run at the plate with two out, but David Quinowski got Matt Nandin to pop out to end the game, earning his first save.
After Monday's off day, the RailCats start a three-game series against division rival Sioux City on Tuesday night at 7:10 p.m. The 'Cats play 26 of their final 38 games at home.