Garcia, Two Relievers Combine on BlueClaws 23rd Shutout of Season
HICKORY, NC - Julian Garcia, Connor Brogdon and Zach Warren combined to two-hit Hickory as Lakewood topped the Crawdads 3-0 on Sunday for their franchise-record 23rd shutout of the season.
The BlueClaws (33-16/74-44) have now taken two of three in the series with the Crawdads (30-20/60-58) and are back to 3.5 games ahead of Hickory in the SAL Northern Division with 19 games left. The teams finish their series on Monday afternoon.
Lakewood leads the minors in shutouts with their 23 and had tied their franchise record, set last year, in a 5-0 win at Charleston on Thursday night. The BlueClaws have now won 16 of their last 21 games and 23 of their last 31 games.
The BlueClaws opened the scoring with two runs in the fourth off Crawdads starter Noah Bremer, all with two outs. Dalton Guthrie doubled to start the rally and after Nick Maton walked, Jake Scheiner smacked a two-run double to left-center to put the BlueClaws up 2-0.
Bremer came out after 4.2 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits.
Josh Stephen doubled home Matt Vierling in the top of the sixth to put Lakewood up 3-0.
Lakewood starter Julian Garcia (6-2) came out after five scoreless innings and has now allowed just four earned runs in 25 innings over five starts with the BlueClaws this year. Including Garcia's outing, BlueClaws starting pitchers have allowed just one run over 22 innings in the last four games and one run in 17 innings in the current series with the Crawdads.
Connor Brogdon came on in the sixth and threw three scoreless innings, allowing just an infield single in the eighth inning, while adding five strikeouts. Brogdon, who was the Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Month for July, has not allowed an earned run in 22 innings dating to June 22nd.
Zach Warren finished things off to earn his 11th save, 10 of which have come in the second half.
Dalton Guthrie had two hits, both doubles, for the BlueClaws and is 10-22 on the current road trip. Rodolfo Duran and Matt Vierling added two hits apiece as well.
The teams finish their series on Monday afternoon at 12:05 pm. RHP Spencer Howard (7-7) starts for the BlueClaws opposite RHP Tyler Phillips (9-5).
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