'Birds Upend 'Claws Late, Match Record
LAKEWOOD, NJ - The Delmarva Shorebirds matched a franchise record with their 83rd win of the season, coming from behind late to beat the Lakewood BlueClaws 4-2 on Sunday afternoon at FirstEnergy Park.
The Shorebirds (35-20, 83-41) matched the inaugural 1996 Shorebirds, who went 83-59 and had been unmatched for 23 years. Delmarva still has 14 games to go in the regular season and is now seven wins away from becoming the first South Atlantic League team since the 2006 Augusta GreenJackets to win 90 games in a season.
Down 2-0 in the top of the eighth, Ryne Ogren and Seamus Curran worked back-to-back singles to lead off. Nick Horvath then grounded out to third to advance both runners, and Cody Roberts grounded out to short to get Ogren home and advance Curran to third. After a walk to Alexis Torres, Shayne Fontana laced a two-run triple down the right field line, putting the Shorebirds on top 3-2.
Ogren and Curran tag-teamed again to add an insurance run in the ninth. Ogren belted a two-out double and advanced to third on a passed ball, and Curran stroked an RBI single into right center to give the game its final 4-2 margin.
Matthew Hammonds (4-2) picked up the win in relief for the Shorebirds with three shutout innings, allowing one hit and one walk while striking out four to finish the afternoon. Kevin Gowdy (0-5) absorbed the loss for the BlueClaws (24-30, 53-71), surrendering three runs on four hits in 2.2 relief innings.
After the first five-and-a-half scoreless innings sped along at just under an hour, Lakewood finally broke through against Delmarva starter Hector Guance in the sixth. Jonathan Guzman worked a one-out walk, then Malvin Matos hit a single. McCarthy Tatum tapped one back to the mound, but Guance's throw to try and force Matos at second arrived late, and everyone was safe with the bases loaded. Cole Stobbe came up next and poked a bloop single into right, scoring Guzman to break the ice. Carlos De La Cruz followed with a bases-loaded walk, putting the BlueClaws up 2-0.
Guance settled down from there, though, and kept any further damage at bay. He finished with his second straight Quality Start in a no-decision, allowing two runs on three hits in six innings with three walks and three strikeouts.
Lakewood's Tom Sutera buzzsawed through the Shorebirds in five near-perfect innings, allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out six and facing the minimum in his own no-decision.
Ogren finished 2-for-4 with a double and two runs to lead the Shorebirds, while Curran went 2-for-4 with a run and RBI. Fontana's two-run triple was his third extra-base hit in his first five games with Delmarva.
Adam Hall and Alexis Torres saw their 10- and nine-game hitting streaks end, respectively, going a collective 0-for-6 with a walk.
Matos went 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored to pace the BlueClaws.
After their final off day of the regular season, the Shorebirds hit the final two weeks of the regular season beginning on Tuesday night at home agains the Greensboro Grasshoppers. Neither team has yet to announce a starting pitcher. First pitch from Arthur W. Perdue Stadium is set for 7:05 p.m. with gates opening at 6:00. Tuesday night is Ticket Amnesty Night at Perdue Stadium; fans with any unused 2019 game tickets can exchange them for a free ticket to Tuesday's game. It's also the final Wag Your Tail Tuesday presented by Concord Pet Foods and Supplies. Pregame coverage on Fox Sports 960 AM and the MiLB First Pitch App begins at 6:50 with Will DeBoer and Sam Jellinek on the call.
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South Atlantic League Stories from August 18, 2019
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- Smith's Four RBI Afternoon Helps RiverDogs Salvage Finale - Charleston RiverDogs
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- Birds Score Three in 8th to Top Claws 4-2 - Lakewood BlueClaws
- Fireflies Game Notes: August 18 vs. Rome (Game 122) - Columbia Fireflies
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