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Fireflies Game Notes: June 12 vs. Asheville (Game 62)

June 12, 2019 - South Atlantic League (SAL) - Columbia Fireflies News Release

Columbia Fireflies (24-37) vs. Asheville Tourists (28-37)

RHP Willy Taveras (4-5, 3.90) vs. RHP Jake Bird (4-1, 2.85)

Wed., June 12, 2019 - Segra Park (Columbia, SC) - First Pitch 7:05 p.m. - Game 62

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LAST TIME OUT: Columbia's offense was firing on all cylinders in an 8-1 victory against Asheville on Tuesday. All but one member of the starting lineup recorded a base hit in the affair. Centerfielder Hansel Moreno spearheaded the surge with a pair of doubles and a single. Gerson Molina and Juan Uriarte added to the offensive display with a solo home run each. Jose Butto led the way on the mound with five innings of relief, allowing just a run and two hits, while punching out five.

TWO OUTS? TOO EASY: The Fireflies thrived in two-out situations at the plate in Tuesday's win. Six of the team's eight runs came with two outs. Three of those two-out runs came during a rally in the first inning. Overall, the offense went 6/13 with two away, including two doubles and a home run.

MAURICIO MAGIC: Fireflies shortstop Ronny Mauricio was named a South Atlantic League All-Star last Tuesday. Mauricio is seventh in the league with 64 hits, even though everyone ahead of Mauricio has played more games than he has. The second-rated Mets prospect also leads Columbia in batting average (.291), runs (25) and hits. Mauricio, a physically gifted switch-hitter, is just 18 years old and one of the youngest players in New York's minor-league system. The native of the Dominican Republic signed with the Mets for $2.1 million in the summer of 2017.

MAURICIO MAGIC, Pt. II: Mauricio is currently riding a 10-game hit streak (May 26-June 11). The shortstop is hitting .364 (16-for-44) during the streak. Mauricio has also reached base safely in 16 of his last 17 games.

F=m(a): Shervyen Newton has turned things around at the plate. The 20-year-old Mets prospect was hitting .078 over his first 16 games as a Firefly (April 22-May 12). Since May 13 (25 GP), the Curacao native is batting .272 (25-for-92). Newton recently recorded a 10-game hit streak (May 22-June 1) and the infielder has reached safely in 21 of the last 25 games.

NEW STAFF: Fireflies second-year manager Pedro Lopez notwithstanding, Columbia has an entirely different coaching staff in 2019. Former big leaguer and Mets pitcher Royce Ring assumes the role as pitching coach and former Eastern League champion Luis Rivera is the new hitting coach. One-time Mets farmhand (and former player for Lopez in Binghamton in 2014) Gilbert Gomez is the team's first-ever bench coach. Daichi Arima (athletic trainer), Sam Nickelsen (strength and conditioning coach), Nicole Collins (assistant athletic trainer) and Dave Williams (mental skills coach) complete the Fireflies coaching staff in 2019.

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