Aguilar Homers Again as Carolina Falls 3-2 in Wilmington
WILMINGTON, DE - Ryan Aguilar hit a solo home run in the first to extend his hitting streak to 11 straight games, but a three-run home run from Kyle Isbel in the third led the Blue Rocks to a series clinching 3-2 victory versus Carolina on Sunday afternoon at Frawley Stadium in Wilmington, DE.
Noah Zavolas started for Carolina (13-12, 52-42) and ended up with the loss after allowing Isbel's homer in the third. It was one of just four hits allowed by Zavolas (L, 5-4, 2.94), but ended up being enough for the Blue Rocks (12-12, 56-37) as pitchers Daniel Tillo, Robert Garcia, Holden Capps and Tad Ratliff combined to hold the Mudcats to just two runs on four hits in Sunday's game.
Tillo (W, 5-8, 4.28) started for Wilmington and allowed just the one Carolina run over six innings while earning the win. He gave up Aguilar's homer in the first, but just two other hits while going through the sixth with four strikeouts and three walks in the victory.
Carolina's only other run in the game came in the eighth when Tristen Lutz doubled, reached third on wild pitch and scored on a groundout hit into by Payton Henry. That double came against Capps, but would be the final run scored by either side in the game.
Capps (H, 10) allowed one run and one hit over one inning pitched. He followed Garcia (H, 4) who had worked a scoreless seventh in place of Tillo's six-inning gem. Ratliff (S, 18) earned the save and struck out one in a scoreless ninth.
Zavolas pitched through the seventh for the eighth time this season and turned in his ninth quality start overall in Sunday's game. He also struck out six and allowed three runs on four hits over seven full innings pitched in the loss. He was later followed by Phil Bickford who struck out one while pitching a scoreless eighth while finishing the game for the Mudcats.
Aguilar's first inning home run off Tillo was his eighth of the season and his second in as many games in Wilmington. He went 1-for-3 in the game while stretching his current hitting streak to 11 straight games. He also hit safely in 16 of his last 17 games.
Lutz went 1-for-3 in the game with a double and a run scored. Zach Clark went 1-for-3 with a single and Rob Henry went 1-for-4.
Isbel went 1-for-3 with the game deciding three-run home run (3) in the third. Kyle Kasser, meanwhile, went 2-for-3 with a run in the game for Blue Rocks.
The loss dropped the Mudcats to 1-4 in their current road trip. It also clinched a series win for Wilmington as they took a 2-0 lead in the current series. The Blue Rocks also now lead the season series between the two teams 7-1.
The series will conclude on Monday night with the first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m. in Wilmington, DE. Christian Taugner (4-5, 5.05) will have the start for the Mudcats in Monday's series and road trip finale.
The game will air live on the Mudcats Radio Network and online at carolinamudcats.com via TuneIn Radio.
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