Hagerstown Suns Game Notes
The Suns open a seven-game homestand hosting the Greenville Drive tonight at 6:05 p.m. Hagerstown sends second round pick, LHP Tim Cate (0-1, 1.76 ERA) to the bump, while the Drive counter with RHP Thad Ward (0-0, 3.76 ERA). Gates to Municipal Stadium open at 5:00 p.m. for the contest.
BULLPEN FALTERS IN SUNS LOSS: After a stellar start from Joan Adon, Hagerstown led the Kannapolis Intimidators 4-1 heading into the sixth inning. Ryan Tapani entered the game and Kannapolis inflicted the damamge, scoring five runs off four hits and a pair of walks, all in the sixth inning. The Intimidators held on to win the game 6-4 after three scoreless innings from their bullpen, concluding with a one inning save from Austin Conway.
WE'RE GOING STREAKING: Gilbert Lara earned the Suns first hitting-streak of six games or more Friday and continued the stretch Saturday. Over those seven games, Lara has earned 11 hits in 30 at-bats, good for a .367 average over that span. The infielder has also hit a homer and driven in six runs during that time. KJ Harrison joined him Saturday with a 2-3 effort at the plate. Harrison has the best batting average in Class-A baseball, with a .432 mark in 12 games this season. He has hits in each of his last six games, where he has a .400 mark (10-25).
SOME WILL WIN...... SOME SING BLUES: In Tim Cate's three starts, he has received just three runs of support while working 15.1 innings. The Connecticut-native has the lowest ERA on the team, sitting at 1.76, but has yet to receive a win despite giving up just three earned runs himself. The lefty has been superb on the hill, earning a 0.98 WHIP, fanning 16 batters while walking just six, but he has yet to earn his first win this season. April 16, he earned his third-career quality start, the Suns first quality start of 2019, but came up empty handed again.
NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK: Hagerstown has had three new players join the team since April 15. Justin Connell, Trey Vickers and Jared Brasher. Connell and Vickers have both been hitting extremely well. Connell is averaging .318 after a 1-for-4 effort Saturday and Vickers has a double, triple and home run in his four games in the South Atlantic League this season. Brasher had a shortened outing Saturday, but did not allow a run to score in 0.2 innings of work. Brasher is the lone returner of the group from last season, where he compiled a 1-7 record to go along with a 4.99 ERA in 51 games where he twirled 70.1 innings.
RECHARGING THE ENGINES: The Suns first off day of the year was Sunday. Hagerstown opened the 2019 season with 17 consecutive days with a game scheduled. Hagerstown has played their first doubleheader, splitting the series with the Asheville Tourists. The team also made four trips to different states during the 17-day stretch. The Suns will earn another off day following the conclusion of their seven-game homestand directly after the off day Sunday. It's the team's longest stretch without an off day until May 8-28 where the Suns go 21 days without a rest. That stretch is their longest of the year without a rest.
SUN SPOTS: The Suns hit .322 in 121 at-bats during the last road trip to Kannapolis to increase the team's season batting average to .245.... Last week the Suns scored 10 or more runs four times, twice back-to-back. The last time the Suns had scored 10 runs in back-to-back games was May 9 and 10, 2017 when they outscored the Hickory Crawdads 10-9 in consecutive contests... Hagerstown is playing the Greenville Drive for the first time since 2016 when the Suns won six of eight games they played against the Red Sox Class-A Affiliate. The two teams split a four-game series at Municipal Stadium, but Hagerstown swept a four-game set at Fluor Field.
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