Baby Bombers Playoff Blog: Sept. 15

Thunder's season ends with 3-1 defeat in ELCS Game 4
09/15/2012 10:04 PM ET
By Lou DiPietro
The Akron Aeros are your 2012 Eastern League Champions, as they defeated the Trenton Thunder 6-1 in Game 4 of the Eastern League Championship Series Saturday night to win the ELCS three games to one.

Nik Turley (L, 1-1) gave the Thunder a quality start in just his third Double-A outing, allowing three runs over six innings while striking out eight – but Aeros starter Toru Murata (W, 1-0) was even better, silencing the Trenton bats for 6 1/3 innings and allowing one run on three hits while fanning seven.

It was Akron who struck first, scoring two runs in the second inning thanks to an RBI triple by Adam Abraham and a sac fly by Ryan Rohlinger. JR Murphy homered in the bottom of the frame to cut the Aeros’ lead to 2-1, but his long ball was one of just four hits the Thunder managed off Akron pitching. In fact, Trenton only got three runners into scoring position; the first was the leadoff batter, Adonis Garcia, who opened the game a triple but was thrown out trying to score on a David Adams grounder, and the other two came when the Thunder loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth.

The Aeros, meanwhile, got a third run in the fifth inning on an RBI double by Roberto Perez, then tallied three in the ninth off Thunder reliever Ryan Pope to salt away the championship. Preston Guilmet, who saved 24 games in the regular season for Akron, got the final out of the eighth, then got out of his own bases-loaded jam in the ninth to earn his third save of the series and fifth of the postseason.

And so, an amazing season for the Thunder is over, as they fall just two wins shy of claiming their first Eastern League crown since 2008; instead, it is the Aeros who will inscribe their name in the EL record books for the second time in four years and fourth since 2003.

In one other note, rehabbing reliever David Aardsma pitched a scoreless seventh inning for Trenton in what may be his final rehab appearance of the season. All of the Yankees’ Minor League affiliates are now finished, so any further appearances Aardsma would make this year would have to come in either the Florida Instructional League or the Arizona Fall League.

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