MOOSIC - In the end, he couldn’t do much to ensure Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s first game as the RailRiders ended in victory.
But Corban Joseph did achieve his own measure of success.
Joseph provided the first hit at the new PNC Field on Thursday and became the first RailRider to cross the plate when he singled and scored in the first inning of Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s 8-4, extra-inning loss to Pawtucket.
“It was pretty exciting,” Joseph said. “(But) you go out there and play to win. We came here as a team.”
But Joseph left opening day at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s revamped park with a few individual honors.
Hitting second for the newly-named RailRiders - who were known as the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees six seasons, Joseph lashed a single to right field to launch the remodeled stadium’s first hit and immediately become the answer toi a trivia question.
“I guess that’s something I can always say,” Joseph smiled.
He had a say in giving the RailRiders an early upper hand, when Joseph scored the team’s - and stadium’s - first run on Melky Mesa’s single later in the first inning.
But the advantage didn’t last, as a 2-0 lead Scranton/Wilkes-Barre built in the opening inning evaporated with Pawtucket’s three-run fifth inning and eventually turned into an 8-4 loss for the RailRiders.
“The outcome is all that matters,” Joseph said.
He came to Scranton/Wilkes-Barre’s Triple-A team last season, playing 86 games for the former little Yankees - who spent the entire 2012 season on the road. As they played in “home” ballparks at six different venues while PNC Field was being rebuilt, Joseph wondered what it would be like when the team finally arrived in Moosic as the RailRiders.
“You hear a lot of things,” Joseph said. “It was actually my first time to play here. You hear all these updates (about the stadium), you’d go on-line to look at the stadium being built.
“They did a great job.”
And despite Thursday’s outcome, Joseph expects the RailRiders to put up a similar performance on the field this season.
“I think we have a great team,” said Joseph, who finished 2-for-5 at the plate. “We’ve got a lot of great players on this team who bring a lot to the plate.”
But in the history of the RailRiders and the new PNC Field, it’ll always be Joseph who stepped up first.