Washington Nationals Farm Report May 18

Courtesy of the Hagerstown Suns

Compiled via team press releases:

Syracuse Chiefs (AAA International League): The Syracuse Chiefs dropped the final game of a three-game set to the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, 3-0, Wednesday morning at Coca-Cola Park. Carlos Alonso factored in all three IronPig runs, scoring the first and homering in the final two to give the IronPigs the series win. Paolo Espino threw a quality start in the loss.

Lehigh Valley (21-18) took the lead first once again, doing so in the third inning. Alonso doubled to start the frame off Espino and moved to third on Zach Eflin’s sacrifice bunt. After a strikeout, Taylor Featherston doubled in Alonso for a 1-0 lead.
The IronPigs got back on the board in the fifth. After Espino walked Darnell Sweeney, Alonso launched his first home run of the year, just clearing the left-field wall near the foul pole for a 3-0 lead.
Syracuse (20-18) once again ran into a great pitching performance from an IronPigs prospect, this time from Zach Eflin. The right hander allowed just two Chiefs hits in seven shutout innings. Syracuse ended up with just four hits on the day.
The Chiefs return home to open a seven-game homestand starting Thursday night in the first of four against the Norfolk Tides. A.J. Cole is scheduled to start for Syracuse opposite Ariel Miranda for Norfolk. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.


Harrisburg Senators (AA Eastern League): Harrisburg Senators’ starting pitcher Reynaldo Lopez was fantastic Thursday in earning his first win of the season as the Senators (18-20) completed a three-game sweep of Erie (16-23) by winning, 3-1. The Senators have won six straight road games and are now 11-7 in May.

Lopez went six innings, limiting Erie to one run on four hits while striking out a season-high nine batters. Lopez allowed a run in the third inning, but faced a more important jam in the sixth. Following a double and a one-out walk that ended with a wild pitch, Lopez faced runners at the corners with one out. Facing the No. 4 and 5 hitters in Erie’s order, Lopez struck out both batters to keep the Senators’ 3-1 lead in tact.

Wander Suero relieved Lopez with two scoreless innings, allowing just a walk and striking out two. Bryan Harper closed the door in the ninth for the Senators, pitching a scoreless ninth to earn his third save in as many chances.

After being held in check through four innings, the Senators took advantage of wildness from Erie starter Tommy Collier. Harrisburg loaded the bases with no outs on an error and two walks. Collier battled, inducing a pair of fly outs that weren’t deep enough to score a run, but the Erie righty then walked Senators shortstop Stephen Perez to score a run. Isaac Ballou followed with a two-run double to snap a 1-1 tie.

Neftali Soto also had two hits for the Senators while Brenden Webb, Shawn Pleffner and Brian Jeroloman all scored a run.

The Senators are off on Thursday before opening a seven-game homestand Friday that will begin with three games against Bowie followed by a four-game set with Portland.

Potomac Nationals (High-A Carolina League): Back home for a brief three-game series, the Potomac Nationals (21-16 Overall, 8-8 Home) jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in both halves of Wednesday night’s doubleheader, courtesy of RBI hits by 1B Jose Marmolejos in the first inning of each game. Paired with stellar outings by RHP Luis Reyes (W, 3-2) and RHP Greg Ross (W, 1-1), Potomac earned the doubleheader sweep with two shutout victories, 3-0 in game one and 2-0 in game two.

Just three batters into game one, Potomac had a lead it did not relinquish. RHP Enderson Franco (L, 3-2) allowed a one-out double to SS Osvaldo Abreu. Marmolejos followed with an RBI single, as the P-Nats led 1-0 after one inning. RF Dale Carey made it 2-0 Potomac in the second on a sacrifice fly that plated 2B Bryan Mejia, and an RBI single by LF Alec Keller in the fourth frame made it 3-0 Potomac, the eventual final.

On the hill, Reyes had his best start of the season. The righty scattered five hits and walked only one over six-shutout frames. Reyes walked just one and struck out seven, one shy of his season high. He faced more than four hitters just once in the first six innings and tallied at least one strikeout in each of the first five innings. Reyes did not allow a Carolina hitter to reach third base. RHP Ryan Brinley(SV, 5) worked around a leadoff single in the seventh and retired the next three to secure Potomac’s series-opening win.

Game two followed a very similar story to game one. Abreu tallied a one-out single in the first inning off of RHP Zach Quintana (L, 1-4). Marmolejos followed with an RBI double down the left field line, as again, the P-Nats led 1-0 three batters into the game. Potomac left men at second and third in the inning, a trend that continued, but did not harm the P-Nats on the night. Potomac left on nine on and went 1-10 with men in scoring position in the game two win.

The P-Nats made it 2-0 on three straight singles vs. Quintana in the fourth, as 3B David Masters, RF Narciso Mesa, and CF Andrew Stevenson all tallied one-out base hits. Stevenson, who had a nine-game hit streak snapped in game one, picked up two hits and an RBI in game two.

In his second start of the season, Ross dazzled over 5.1 innings. The righty allowed only two hits and faced just one over the minimum. Ross allowed a one-out single to RF Keith Curcio in the first inning but erased him on a double play ball. C Joseph Odom reached on a fielding error in the fifth, but again, Ross induced a double play. 2B Ryan Gebhardt then led off the sixth frame with a single, before DH Tanner Murphy popped out, and the P-Nats went to the pen. LHP RC Orlan (SV, 4) got two quick outs in the sixth and retired the side in order in the seventh, as Potomac closed out a 2-0 win.

Six different starters had at least one hit for the P-Nats in game one, while eight of the nine game two starters had at least one hit. The P-Nats pitching staff allowed just eight hits and walked only one in the doubleheader, Potomac’s first back-to-back shutout performance of the season.

The P-Nats have an opportunity at a series sweep, as they host the Mudcats Thursday night at Pfitzner Stadium. RHP Phillips Valdez (4-1, 4.07) is set to make his first start of the season vs. Carolina, while the P-Nats will see RHP Wes Parsons (0-0, 4.43) as a starter for the first time in 2016. First pitch is set for 7:05.

Hagerstown Suns (Low-A South Atlantic): Jefry Rodriguez pitched five innings of one-run ball and Trey Lambert and Tommy Peterson each worked two scoreless relief innings, leading the Hagerstown Suns to a 2-1 win over the Lakewood BlueClaws on Wednesday at Municipal Stadium.

The Suns (26-12) swept the three-game series from the BlueClaws (15-23) and have won six straight overall. They took over first place in the South Atlantic League’s Northern Division by a half-game over Hickory, which lost 4-2 at Lexington on Wednesday.

Lakewood took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Jiandido Tromp led off with a single, took second on a wild pitch, went to third on Grenny Cumana’s infield single and scored when Carlos Duran grounded into a double play.

Hagerstown responded with the tying run in the fourth and the go-ahead run in the fifth off Shane Watson (2-2). In the fourth, Kelvin Gutierrez and Ian Sagdal hit one-out singles and Gutierrez scored on a fielder’s choice groundout by Rhett Wiseman. In the fifth, Cody Dent reached on a two-out single and scored from first on Victor Robles’ double to left.

Rodriguez (3-2) allowed five hits and two walks while striking out three for the win. Lambert allowed two hits and struck out one over his two innings, and Peterson recorded his fifth save, allowing one hit and striking out four over the final two frames.

Carlos Duran went 3-for-4 with a double for the BlueClaws. He was the only batter with multiple hits in the contest. Hagerstown begins a four-game series at Greensboro on Thursday night at 7.


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