Southern Maryland Blue Crabs

Blue Crabs get beat by Ducks, 10-6

April 24, 2009 - Atlantic League (AtL)
Southern Maryland Blue Crabs News Release

For the second straight night against the Long Island Ducks, the Blue Crabs never led and their late inning rally was much too little, much too late. After jumping out to a 6-0 lead in the second inning, a Ducks error in the third allowed the Blue Crabs to trim the lead to 6-3. Long Island would restore a six run-lead, and two late-inning home runs by Crabs shortstop Travis Garcia would unfortunately come in a 10-6 loss.

After Blue Crabs starter Ryan Bicondoa set the Ducks down in order to begin the game, Friday night's contest would ultimately be decided in the second inning. Bicondoa gave up five consecutive singles to Duck hitters, and John Pachot really cleaned up with the bases loaded, stroking a bases-clearing 3-RBI triple into the right field corner of Regency Furniture Stadium. After all of that activity, the Blue Crabs were already down 4-0, and former Minnesota Twin and Ducks centerfielder Lew Ford chipped in an RBI single to score Pachot. Ford would then score on a Ron Davenport sac-fly to make it 6-0. In all, Bicondoa was tagged for six earned runs and eight hits in the inning.

With two away in the home half of the third, Ducks rightfielder Raul Gonzalez dropped what should have been an easy fly-out off the bat of Travis Garcia, and Garcia ended up at third base on the play. He would score on an RBI single off the bat of Pat Osborn, and Osborn would later score on an RBI double by Eric Crozier. The third consecutive hit in the inning after the error came from Jeremy Owens, whose double plated Crozier to cut the lead in half at 6-3.

The Ducks quickly squelched the rally in the top of the fourth however, thanks to a solo homerun to left-center by Ray Navarrete, and an RBI single by Victor Rodriguez. When reliever Jason Blanton came in for the fifth he struggled with his control, ended up in a bases loaded jam, and walked in a run with four straight balls to Preston Wilson of Long Island. The insurance runs made the score 9-3 in favor of the Ducks.

Travis Garcia gave the Crabs a little bit of life in the seventh, with a solo homer to left field off southpaw reliever Troy Cate, cutting the Long Island lead to five. After a Pachot RBI sac-fly in the ninth off Jim Ed Warden gave the Ducks an even 10 runs, Garcia checked in again with a mammoth home run that easily cleared the Red Hot & Blue Picnic Pavilion in left field at Regency Furniture Stadium with one out in the bottom of the ninth. It was a two-run shot, after Chuck Jeroloman drew a leadoff, pinch hit walk. Lefty reliever Jason Norderum was on the mound for the brief nervous moment for Long Island, but ultimately closed things down for the 10-6 victory.

While Bicondoa, who led the Crabs in victories last year with 13- good for second in the Atlantic League- took the loss, Ducks starter Ken Ray went five innings to pick up the win. Ray scattered seven hits, allowing three runs, none of which were earned because of the Gonzalez error in the third. He struck out seven, and walked no one. Bicondoa's final line read 4 innings pitched, 10 hits, eight runs, seven of which were earned, no walks and a strike out.

After two games, Blue Crabs starting shortstop Travis Garcia is 6 for 9, (.667), with the two home runs and five RBI.

The Blue Crabs will next be in action Saturday night at home at Regency Furniture Stadium against the Long Island Ducks for the third game of this four game season-opening series. First pitch is at 6:35 p.m, and the stadium gates will open at 5:30 p.m. Scheduled starters are LHP Randy Leek for Long Island, and LHP John Halama, a nine-year Major League veteran, for Southern Maryland.

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