WORCESTER — Eric Hamilton hit a grand slam in the eighth inning, capping off a seven-run rally as the Pittsfield Suns beat the Worcester Bravehearts 11-8 Wednesday night.

The win was the second straight for the Suns, who have tonight off before hosting Bristol Friday night at Wahconah Park.

Kevin Hassett, the third of four Pittsfield pitchers, got the win. The UMass-Amherst right-hander gave up two runs on three hits in 2 2/3 innings but struck out six. That was a season-best for the Springfield native.

Worcester took a 6-4 lead into the top of the seventh, when the Suns rallied. Conor Moriarty and Brian Moskey hit consecutive singles to lead off the inning and Al Zachary was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Worcester pitcher Kevin Stone walked Thomas Hughes on four pitches, to force in Moriarty. Hamilton reached on an error, scoring Moskey and with two outs, Colin Gimblet plated Zachary with a sacrifice fly.

Then in the eighth, Moskey was hit by a pitch and reliever Baylor LaPointe walked Zachary and Hughes before Hamilton hit a 1-1 pitch out for his Futures League-leading seventh home run. He also had a league-leading 32 runs batted in.

Hassett ended up with his first win.


Moskey had three of Pittsfield's 10 hits, while Hamilton and Gimblet had two each. Mike Coggeshall went 4 for 5 for Worcester with three RBI, and now has a 10-game hit streak. Stone took the loss.


DANBURY, CONN. >> Tanner Bird picked up his third save of the season as the SteepleCats held off Danbury in a wild game.

The SteepleCats scored in five of the first six innings and led 12-1 after 5 1/2 frames. But the Westerners came back strong.

Danbury scored four runs in the sixth, two in the seventh and three in the eighth. When the dust settled, it was 12-10.

Bird, the fifth North Adams pitcher, came on in the ninth and struck Steve Cohen out for the first out. The next hitter, Nick Gatewood, doubled, which brought the tying run up to the plate. But Bird struck out James Venuto and Jesse Uttendorfer to end the game.

Ryan Tapp, the right-hander from North Carolina-Asheville, gave up one run in five innings, but was charged with five in 5 1/3.

The SteepleCats had 11 hits in the game. Ed Haus had a big night, going 2 for 3 with a run scored and three RBI. John Mazza, Jean-Francois Garon and Easton Johnson all drove in two runs each. Johnson and Keaton Wright had two hits each for the SteepleCats, who travel to Holyoke tonight to play the Valley Blue Sox.