Compiled via team press releases:
Syracuse Chiefs (AAA International League): The Syracuse Chiefs fell to the Columbus Clippers on Friday night 8-3. The loss was the Chiefs’ sixth in a row and eighth in the team’s last nine games.
Columbus (36-32) started the scoring in the second inning off of Syracuse (30-35) starter Taylor Hill. Adam Moore got aboard with an infield single. Ronny Rodriguez then grounded to Jose Lozada at second. Lozada fielded the grounder cleanly, but his throw to shortstop Trea Turner was offline, forcing Turner to eat the throw to first after getting the force out. Guillermo Quiroz followed with his first of two doubles on the night, scoring Rodriguez from first for a 1-0 Clippers lead.
Syracuse (30-35) responded in the bottom of the frame. After Matt den Dekker reached with a walk, Pedro Severino followed with a ground ball to Rodriguez at second. Rodriguez misfired to first, and den Dekker and Severino reached second and third on the throwing error. Next up, Caleb Ramsey knocked in a run with a ground ball to second base, tying the game at 1-1. Severino went to third on the force out as well. The next batter was Jason Martinson, who gave the Chiefs a 2-1 lead on his sacrifice fly to left field that plated Severino.
The Clippers responded with five consecutive scoring innings, with the first three coming off of Syracuse starter Taylor Hill. In the fourth, Quiroz hit a two-out single, which Joey Butler followed by launching a two-run home run to deep right field to give Columbus a 3-2 lead. In the fifth, Erik Gonzalez and Yandy Diaz started the inning with back-to-back singles. After a sacrifice bunt put Gonzalez and Diaz on second and third, Giovanny Urshela drove in Gonzalez with a groundout. Columbus continued the scoring in the sixth. Quiroz ripped his second double of the night to get the inning going. Quiroz moved to third on a Butler single and came around to score on a Collin Cowgill groundout, pushing the Clippers’ lead to 5-2.
Aaron Laffey replaced Hill on the mound to begin the seventh. Jesus Aguilar was the first Clipper to reach in the frame on a single to center field. Urshela followed with another single to put runners on first and second. Moore brought both teammates around to score on a double that hit the gap in left-center, giving Columbus a 7-2 lead. The Clippers continued their scoring in the eighth. With one out, Cowgill and Gonzalez hit consecutive singles, putting runners on the corners. Diaz promptly hit another single which scored Cowgill to push the lead to 8-2.
The Chiefs got back on the board in the eighth. Severino doubled for his second hit of the game and then came around to score when Ramsey drove a single to right-center. Severino initially held up at third, but a bobble from Cowgill in center field allowed Severino to score and cut the lead to 8-3.
The Chiefs and Clippers battle again Saturday night in game two of this three-game series. Austin Voth is scheduled to get the start for Syracuse opposite Adam Plutko of Columbus. First pitch is set for 7:05 from NBT Bank Stadium.
Harrisburg Senators (AA Eastern League): Reading starting pitcher Nick Pivetta exacted some more revenge on his former team as the right-hander pitched a complete game shutout over the Harrisburg Senators, 4-0. The loss was the Senators’ fourth shutout of the season.
Reading took control of the game when they sent nine batters to the plate in the second inning off Harrisburg starter Phillips Valdez. The Fightin’ Phils plated four runs on six singles in the frame. All four runs were scored with two outs.
Meanwhile, Pivetta continued his mastery over his old team. Pivetta posted nine zeroes allowing seven hits and three walks while fanning five. The former Senator has now run his scoreless streak against Harrisburg to 20.2 innings over three starts since his was traded to the Philadelphia organization last July. Pivetta also went 2-for-2 at the plate with an RBI and run scored.
Valdez (0-1) tossed six innings surrendering just those six hits in the fateful second inning. The lithe right-hander walked one, struck out six, and hit a batter in his second outing for the Senators. John Simms and Koda Glover worked three scoreless to keep the Phils in check.
Zach Collier was the only Senator with more than one hit as the outfielder went 2-for-4. Wilmer Difo reached base three times as he walked twice and stretched a single into a hustle double.
Harrisburg continues their three-game series against the Fightin’ Phils on Saturday night at 6:00 p.m. as they send Greg Ross to the FNB Field mound. The first 2,000 fans through the gate will also receive a blue item in support of Prostate Cancer Awareness and the Senators will be wearing special blue jerseys that will be auctioned off to benefit the cause. The game can be heard on Fox Sports 1460 AM, on the internet at senatorsbaseball.com, or through the TuneIn and iHeart Radio apps with The Matt LeCroy Show beginning the radio broadcast at 5:45 p.m.
Potomac Nationals (High-A Carolina League): In revenge of a doubleheader sweep just over a week ago in Myrtle Beach, SC, the Potomac Nationals (33-32 Overall, 15-16 Home) returned the favor Friday evening in Woodbridge, VA. C Raudy Read hit Potomac’s first walk-off home run of the season in a 4-2 extra innings game one victory, and the P-Nats survived a final inning rally in a 4-3 win in game two over the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (34-33 Overall, 16-17 Road). Potomac fell behind early in each game, but has now won three consecutive games when the club has given up the first run of the game.
With RHP Erick Fedde (ND) making his return from the disabled list, Potomac looked up at a deficit after just the top of the second inning. Fedde, who threw 60 pitches in the four-inning no-decision, stranded two men on base in the first inning but could not work around a leadoff walk in the second. After he issued a free pass to 3B Gioskar Amaya to begin the second inning, the righty gave up a one-out single to C Erick Castillo, before LF Charcer Burks made it 1-0 with an RBI base hit. That was the only run that Fedde allowed, as the righty struck out two, walked two, and gave up three hits.
Potomac quickly tied the opening half of the doubleheader, as 3B Drew Ward homered to begin the home half of the second inning against RHP Jonathan Martinez (ND). It was Ward’s team best 11thhome run of the season, the second most in the Carolina League.
The P-Nats then took the lead against Martinez in the fourth inning. 1B Jose Marmolejos led off the frame with his team best 23rd double of the season, and after Martinez retired the next two hitters,RF Drew Vettleson had a two-out RBI single, as Potomac led 2-1 after four innings.
Fedde turned the ball over to the bullpen, and RHP Mario Sanchez pitched three innings of two-hit relief. The righty gave up the lead in fifth, as CF Rashad Crawford drew a one-out walk and advanced to second base on a fly out by SS Gleyber Torres. 2B Ian Happ followed with a game-tying RBI single. The game remained tied 2-2 into extra innings.
After RHP Ryan Brinley (W, 3-0) worked around a one-out walk in a scoreless eighth, Marmolejos drew a leadoff walk against LHP Tommy Thorpe (L, 2-3) in the home half of the frame. Ward flied out to centerfield, but Read followed with his first home run since the season-opener. Read’s walk-off home run just barely cleared the wall in left-centerfield. It was Potomac’s first walk-off win since April 30th and just the team’s second of 2016.
Coming off of the emotional win in game one, Potomac found itself behind before stepping into the batter’s box in game two. RHP Boone Whiting (W, 7-2) walked Torres with one out in the first inning. After the righty retired Happ, 1B Yasiel Balaguert tallied his team best 46th RBI with a two-out double. The Pelicans added a run in the second inning on a double, a sacrifice bunt, and a sacrifice fly, but then did not score again until the final frame.
Down 2-0 through 3.5 innings, Potomac sent nine men to the plate as part of a four-run fourth inning against RHP Zach Hedges (L, 6-5). Thanks to two errors and another defensive misplay, Potomac managed to turn a two-run deficit into a two-run lead. C Matt Reistetter led off the inning with a single, while 2B David Masters followed with an infield single to SS Andrew Ely. Ely’s throw got past Balaguert at first base, as the E6 put runners on second and third with no outs. CF Andrew Stevenson hit what could have been a double play ball, but with the previous error, his groundout to second base brought Reistetter home and made it 2-1. SS Osvaldo Abreu followed with an RBI groundout to Torres, which tied the game at two. Four straight hitters then reached with two outs, as Marmolejos singled, his second hit of the game, Ward had an RBI double, which proved to be the game winner, Vettleson reached on an error by Happ at second base, and DH Alec Keller made it 4-2 with a two-out RBI base hit.
Whiting tallied his team best seventh quality start, as the righty allowed just two runs on six hits over six innings. Whiting gave way to LHP RC Orlan (SV, 7) for the seventh frame and the Pelicans nearly tied the game. Orlan issued a one-out walk to Burks before he struck out Crawford. Down to his final strike, Torres singled to centerfield, which put the tying runners on base. Happ followed with a two-out double into the left field corner, which plated Burks, though Torres was held up at third base. With the tying run at third and the go-ahead run at second, Balaguert lined out sharply to Stevenson in centerfield, as Potomac held on to the 4-3 victory.
With one doubleheader in the books, the two squads will return to Pfitzner Stadium Saturday night for another twin bill. Game one starts at 5:00pm, while game two will start approximately 30 minutes after the first game wraps up. RHP Austen Williams (0-1, 2.57) and RHP Luis Reyes (3-6, 5.18) are set to start the two games for Potomac, while RHP Trevor Clifton (4-3, 2.21) and RHP Erick Leal (8-3, 3.55) are scheduled to get the starting nod for Myrtle Beach.
The Potomac Nationals Baseball Network will carry live coverage beginning with the “P-Nats Leadoff Show” at 4:45pm. P-Nats Gameday Audio on the Potomac Nationals Baseball Network is available at www.potomacnationals.com or via the TuneIn Radio App.
Saturday night, the first 1,000 fans through the gates before game one will take home a collectable P-Nats Beer and Soda Stein, presented by PMSI. In addition, the Potomac Nationals Booster Club will be hosting its first auction of the year, which includes bobbleheads, ticket packs, and autographed items. Post-game, fans can take in a fireworks show, presented by Floor and Décor and WTOP, while kids can run the bases, presented by Kids N Motion. Saturday is also the second scout night of the season. Sunday, celebrate Father’s Day at the Pfitz, presented by the Virginia Department of Social Services-Putative Father Registry. The P-Nats will host an all-you-can-eat buffet picnic, available as a $7 add-on to any game ticket. There will also be a Father’s Day keychain giveaway courtesy of the Derrick Hall Pro-State Foundation. Sunday is also Star Wars Day at the ballpark, as P-Nats players and coaches will wear special Admiral Ackbar jerseys, which will be auctioned off via a silent auction during the game. The winners will take home autographed game-work jerseys after the game, with all proceeds from the auction to benefit Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic.
Hagerstown Suns (Low-A South Atlantic League): The Hagerstown Suns (43-25) defeated the Greenville Drive (35-32) 4-1 in the second game of Friday’s doubleheader at Municipal Stadium.
The Suns held the Drive to one run in both of Friday’s games.
Hagerstown scored two runs in the first inning. Max Schrock doubled to score Victor Robles and Rhett Wiseman hit into a double play to score Schrock.
The Suns scored again in the second inning on a single by Robles to go ahead 3-0.
The Drive scored one run in the fourth inning on a single by Tyler Spoon.
Hagerstown scored their last run in the fifth inning on a sacrifice-fly by Matthew Page to make the final score 4-1.
Winning pitcher, Matthew DeRosier (3-3), allowed five hits and one earned run through five innings.
Philip Walby pitched the seventh inning and earned his second save.