Early Runs Lead Knights Past Mets 6-1
(UPTOWN CHARLOTTE, NC) - The Charlotte Knights gained a first-inning lead and never looked back behind a strong pitching performance to defeat the Syracuse Mets 6-1 in the finale of their three-game series on Thursday night.
The victory gives the Knights a series win, two games to one in their final meetings with the Mets this season.
Charlotte wasted no time getting in front in their first turn at the plate. Jon Jay reached with a single and Matt Skole walked to put two runners on with one out. Paulo Orlando got the scoring started with a double to deep center, scoring Jay. Daniel Palka then drove in Skole with a single to right. With two outs, Danny Mendick doubled the lead with a double down the left field line, plating Orlando and Palka to give the Knights a 4-0 lead after one.
In the fourth, Alcides Escobar singled and Mendick walked to again put runners on first and second with nobody out. Three hitters later, Jay laced a single to center, scoring two more runs to give the Knights a 6-0 lead.
That would prove to be enough for Charlotte starter Donny Roach (W, 1-3), but not without a little help from his defense.
In the fifth, the Mets began the inning with Arismendy Alcantara's double to left and he advanced to third on Tim Tebow's ground out. Luis Guillorme then sent a fly ball to deep center field. Knights center fielder Adam Engel retreated to the warning track and made a leaping catch at the wall, likely robbing Guillorme of a two-run home run. But Alcantara scored on a sacrifice fly to left to get the Mets on the board.
That would be all the Mets could produce. Roach pitched 5.0 innings with one run against on four hits with one walk and six strikeouts to earn his first win of the season.
From there, the Knights bullpen was sharp as Thyago Vieira and Jordan Guerrero each threw 2.0 scoreless innings to finish the victory.
Offensively, Jay produced three hits for the second straight night while four other Knights recorded multi-hit games in the win.
The homestand continues for the Knights with the first of three games against the Louisville Bats on Friday night. Dylan Cease (5-2, 4.37) is scheduled to start for the Knights. Pre-game radio coverage of the 7:04 p.m. game is set for 6:50 p.m. on 730 The Game ESPN Charlotte. The "Voice of the Charlotte Knights" Matt Swierad and long-time Knights radio broadcaster Mike Pacheco will have the call for all of the action.
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