There were plenty of glazed stares in the Mud Hens clubhouse following Monday night's 14-inning marathon against Rochester at Fifth Third Field.
But there also were plenty of smiles after the Hens beat the Red Wings 6-5.
“If you're going to play that long, you might as well win,'' said Hens manager Larry Parrish. “But we were getting to the point where we were playing to win, not tie. We couldn't play to tie because we didn't have any more pitching.''
Pat Ahearne, one of the Hens' scheduled starters in today's doubleheader in Richmond, was warming up to pitch when the Hens scored twice in the bottom of the 14th to win for just the second time in the last six games.
With runners on first and second, Hiram Bocachica's sacrifice attempt was thrown past the third baseman, allowing both baserunners to come home. The play was one of several gifts the Red Wings handed the Hens:
In the seventh Rochester had runners on second and third and only one out, but Chris Mears pitched out of the jam without allowing a run.
In the ninth Mike Ryan doubled off Hens closer Matt Anderson, only to be thrown out midway between second and third in an inexplicable bit of baserunning. The next Rochester batter, Rob Bowen, launched a game-tying home run.
In the 12th Rochester scored a go-ahead run, then loaded the bases with one out but failed to score again.
The Hens turned crucial double plays in both the 13th and 14th innings to keep the Red Wings at bay.
“That's one of those games that, when you lose, you say, `Jiminy Christmas, we had a thousand chances to win,''' Parrish said. “And we had the same thing, basically, but a lot of ours were with two outs. They would have the bases loaded [and didn't score].''