Game Notes (May 20)
The Power concludes its four-game series with the Greenville Drive this evening at Fluor Field at the West End, with first pitch set for 7:05 p.m. RHP Ryne Inman (4-2, 3.65 ERA) takes the hill for West Virginia.
FIVE-RUN SECOND DOOMS POWER: West Virginia got some early offense from Onil Pena and Jake Anchia, but Greenville plated five runs on six hits in the second inning against Clay Chandler, ultimately claiming an 8-4 win over the Power Sunday afternoon at Fluor Field at the West End. Chandler ceded a career-high eight runs and 11 hits over 3.2 innings in the loss. West Virginia started the scoring in the second inning on Pena's solo home run, while Charlie McConnell tacked on a run later in the frame with a RBI base knock for a 2-0 edge. After the Drive's big second frame, the Power responded with two in the third on Anchia's RBI single and a fielder's choice. However, Greenville added a run in the third and two in the fourth to put the game out of reach. McConnell had a season-high three hits with a pair of doubles, while Devin Sweet and Bryan Pall fired 4.1 innings of one-hit ball, compiling five strikeouts.
ALMIGHTY ANCHIA: Anchia has been on quite the tear recently, averaging .364 (12-for-33) in his last nine games with five homers and 12 RBI. The backstop recorded his first career multi-homer game May 9 in the twin bill opener against Augusta, becoming the third Power batter to do so this season (Dean Nevarez, April 26 vs. Asheville and Jarred Kelenic, April 27 vs. Asheville). Anchia is the first batter to homer in back-to-back at-bats since Trae Arbet on April 12, 2017, vs. Asheville. The Nova Southeastern product collected a career-best five RBI May 9 as well, the first West Virginia slugger to accomplish the feat since Deon Stafford's six-RBI effort August 11, 2018, at Rome.
SWEET AS HONEY: Bobby Honeyman has started to find his rhythm with West Virginia. The New York native is riding a season-long seven-game hitting streak dating back to May 13, during which he is averaging .345 (10-for-29) with two doubles, two RBI and five runs, as well as just one strikeout. In this span, the infielder has raised his average from .175 to .201, the first time it has been above the Mendoza Line threshold. Honeyman is the sixth Power batter to post a hitting streak of at least six games (Kelenic, 18; Cesar Izturis Jr. and Pena, 9; Ryan Ramiz and Julio Rodriguez, 6). Honeyman has also reached base in a season-best eight straight games, dating back to May 12.
OH MY ONIL: Pena drilled his fifth home run of the season Sunday afternoon, the most he has had in a season since 2017. With his second-inning bomb, the Dominican Republic native is one of three Power batters with at least five home runs, joining Anchia and Kelenic, who are tied for the team lead with seven each.
THE LONG BALL: The Power now has 34 home runs on the season, third-most in the South Atlantic League behind the Greensboro Grasshoppers (50) and Hickory Crawdads (46). Though West Virginia's May record has left something to be desired, the power has not left the lineup, with the offense slugging 14 long balls in the season's second month, tied for second-most in the SAL with four other teams (Greensboro, 20).
BIG INNING BITES: Greenville's five-run second inning put the game out of reach for West Virginia Sunday afternoon, as the Drive notched the sixth big inning against the Power this season (Lexington, five-run third April 8 at Whitaker Bank Ballpark, Lakewood, five-run fifth May 2 at FirstEnergy Park, Greensboro, five-run third May 4 and five-run second May 5 at First National Bank Field and Augusta, five-run fourth May 8 at Appalachian Power Park). The Drive strung together six hits in that second inning, the most hits West Virginia has given up in a single inning this year.
BULLPEN BULLIES: West Virginia's bullpen has kept this team in a ton of games, especially during this road trip. Over the first six games of the road swing, the relief corps has spun 22.1 innings and given up three earned runs (1.21 ERA) on 10 hits while striking out 29 batters. The Power's bullpen ERA currently sits at 2.77, 129 points below the starters. Pall has not given up a run in his last four outings, while Sweet has not allowed a run in four of his last five games.
RODRIGUEZ STARTING TO ROLL: Nick Rodriguez has reached base safely in 10 of his last 11 games, dating back to May 5. In that span, the infielder has posted a .278 (10-for-36) clip with four RBI, two runs and three doubles.
LOOKING TO END ON A HIGH NOTE: With a win Monday night, West Virginia would claim its first series win since May 8-10 against Augusta at Appalachian Power Park, when they took three of four from the GreenJackets. Since then, the Power has been swept in back-to-back series against the Kannapolis Intimidators and Charleston RiverDogs.
POWER POINTS: West Virginia went 3-for-10 with RISP, stranding eight men on base... Joseph Rosa recorded his 11th multi-hit game of the year, second-most on the team (Kelenic, 14)... McConnell posted his first career two-double game.
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