Nationals Minor League Notebook: May 1

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Courtesy of the Potomac Nationals

By Michael Marzzacco

Compiled via team press releases:

SYRACUSE (AAA International League): OFF.

HARRISBURG (AA Eastern): Senators fell to the Thunder 7-0 in Trenton.

POTOMAC (High-A Carolina League): A two-out ninth inning rally was not enough for the Potomac Nationals (12-11) on Monday night, as they left the tying man in scoring position in a 3-2 loss to the Down East Wood Ducks (12-13). The P-Nats got two two-out hits in the ninth, but couldn’t get the final run across the plate. In the loss, both of Potomac’s runs came via the home run. C Taylor Gushue hit two home runs and now leads the league with seven home runs this season.

The P-Nats got on the board first against RHP Richelson Pena (W, 2-1), though the team managed just two runs over 6.2 innings vs. the right-handed starter. Gushue homered with one out in the second inning, and then once again in the seventh frame. Pena finished the game with a season high nine strikeouts.

In between Gushue’s two home runs, the Wood Ducks scored all three of their runs against RHP Luis Reyes (L, 1-4). Reyes tallied a quality start, as the righty gave up three runs, two earned, on six hits over seven innings. Reyes tallied seven strikeouts in the loss.

Down East tied the game with a two-out rally in the bottom of the fourth. SS Josh Morgan singled, took second on a passed ball charged to Gushue, and scored one batter later on an RBI double by DH Chuck Moorman.

After Reyes stranded a man at second base in the fourth inning, he struggled immediately in the fifth. 1B Josh Altmann led off the inning with a single, while LF LeDarious Clark followed with a two-run home run. Reyes finished his outing with six consecutive outs.

LHP Jason Richman got the final out in the seventh inning and the first out in the eighth for Down East, while RHP Ricardo Rodriguez (SV, 5) got the final five outs of the game. Rodriguez gave up consecutive two-out singles to SS Edwin Lora and LF Jack Sundberg in the ninth inning, but CF Victor Robles flied out to centerfield, as Potomac finished the game 0-7 with RISP.

For the second consecutive series, the P-Nats will need a win in game two of the series to set up a potential rubber match in the finale. Tuesday night, LHP Hector Silvestre (3-0. 3.97) will start for Potomac. Silvestre tossed six-shutout innings in a victory over the Wood Ducks on 4/19. For Down East, RHP Pedro Payano (0-1, 4.87) is set to make the start. Payano allowed four earned runs on nine hits over just 4.1 innings in the matchup with Silvestre at Pfitzner Stadium. First pitch from Grainger Stadium is set for 7:00pm.

HAGERSTOWN (Low-A South Atlantic): OFF.

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