September 1, 2017 - South Atlantic League (SAL) - Hagerstown Suns
HAGERSTOWN, Md. - Tres Barrera finished a single short of the cycle during a 3-for-5 night at the plate with five RBI to lead the Hagerstown Suns (32-32, 70-63) in a sweep-busting win over the Delmarva Shorebirds (29-36, 58-75) on Thursday at Municipal Stadium.
Following losses by the Hickory Crawdads and West Virginia Power, Hagerstown's playoff elimination number remained at one with four South Atlantic League regular season games left to play.
Barrera opened his career night with a towering 428-foot home run to center field that scored Blake Perkins and Telmito Agustin in the bottom of the first for a 3-0 lead. In the third, Barrera sprayed a double to the wall in right field that scored Carter Kieboom from second. Nick Banks immediately followed with an RBI double of his own to give Hagerstown a 5-3 lead.
Delmarva tied up the game at 5-5 with four straight hits including two doubles against Suns starter Brigham Hill in the fourth. Hill, a fifth-round pick by the Washington Nationals earlier this year, couldn't escape the frame and left after 3 2/3 innings, four earned runs, and four strikeouts.
Barrera put the Suns back in front with his third extra-base hit of the game on a triple to the wall in center field that scored both Perkins and Kieboom to give Hagerstown a 7-5 advantage in the fifth. Perkins ripped his own extra-base hit in the sixth on a two-run homer to right-center field that drove in Paul Panaccione. The natural righty, who now works as a switch hitter, has eight homers this year, all from the left-hand side.
Perkins finished 3-for-4 at the plate with three runs scored and two RBI. Banks also tallied three hits and drove in a pair. The Suns erased recent offensive woes by batting 4-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
A.J. Bogucki (Win, 4-2) tossed 3 1/3 scoreless innings in the middle of the game and ran his scoreless streak to 12 1/3 innings. He allowed two hits and struck out five Shorebirds to run his total to 11 strikeouts in his last 6 1/3 frames of relief work.
Barrera went back to the plate in the seventh but failed to pick up the single he needed for the cycle as he grounded out to second on the first pitch. The handful of runs batted in for the 22-year-old catcher from Eagle Pass, Texas set a new career high in his second professional season.
Delmarva recorded an RBI groundout in the eighth to make it 9-6 against Suns reliever Gabe Klobosits in his home debut, but the six-foot-seven-inch righty recorded the final six outs with one hit allowed and five strikeouts.
On Friday, the Suns open their final regular season home series against the Lexington Legends at Municipal Stadium. Hagerstown southpaw Yonathan Ramirez (1-2, 5.19) goes to the mound against Lexington righty Nolan Watson (1-10, 6.75) at 7:05 p.m. It's the final fireworks spectacular of the year and the Suns will also distribute leftover Boots Poffenberger bobbleheads following a previous rainout. For tickets, call (301) 791-6266 or visit hagerstownsuns.com.