Hagerstown Suns Game Notes
The Suns play the Hickory Crawdads beginning at 2:05 p.m. at Municipal Stadium. RHP Joan Adon (2-1, 3.12 ERA) gets the nod for Hagerstown, while Hickory counters with RHP Yerry Rodriguez (4-1, 1.74 ERA).
SUNS PITCHING UNRAVELS IN 9-4 LOSS: Tomas Alastre could not get through the second inning following a 1 hour and forty-three minute rain delay in the Suns 9-4 loss to the Crawdads at Municipal Stadium Saturday night.
After working a one-two-three first frame, Alastre (L, 3-3), faced seven hitters in the second, allowing all of them to reach. Four runs would score before Alastre gave way to Ryan Tapani, who worked out of the inning without allowing a hit. Following the second, the Crawdads (27-14) led 5-1 and never looked back. The Suns (18-23) came out of the gates hot, with their first two baserunners reaching safely. Cody Wilson was hit by a pitch prior to Justin Connell grounding a infield single to third to set up the Suns. Omar Meregildo doubled to plate Wilson and put Hagerstown in front. After that, Tim Brennan (W, 3-2) was stellar, finishing the evening spinning 6.1 innings, allowing just five hits and the single earned run. The Suns added three more runs off Nick Starr, all in the ninth with two outs.
UH OH, ALASTRE: Tomas Alastre has been either very effective or not at all this season, there's been no in-between. The righty is now 3-3 on the year after giving up five runs in one inning of work yesterday. In his three wins, Alastre has spun 15.2 innings, allowing just five runs, but in his three losses, he has made it nine innings while surrendering 12 earned runs. A big indicator to Alastre's success in a start is his ability to throw strikes. He is 1-2 in four games where he has walked four or more batters in 2019.
COMPELLING CONNELL: Last night, Justin Connell was the lone Suns player to strike for multiple hits, marking his ninth multi-hit game of the year. In 98 at-bats this season he's hitting .296, the second-best qualifying mark on the team with seven extra-base hits and 14 RBI. The Spain-native has also reached 14 times on the free pass which brings his on-base percentage to .388.
EARLY RISERS: Beginning with today's game the Suns play back-to-back day games for the first time this season. Hagerstown owns a 2-4 record in day games this season.
QUALITY CATE: The University of Connecticut-product has now issued six consecutive quality starts dating back to April 16. In that time frame, the Suns are 3-3, but he has worked 36 innings, allowing just eight runs (2.00 ERA) while fanning 38 batters. The southpaw also leads the Suns in ERA (1.99), WHIP (0.95), wins (3), strikeouts (50) and innings pitched (45.1). The 2018 second round pick pitched in four games for Hagerstown last year and fininshed with 19 strikeouts in 21 innings to pair with a 5.57 ERA.
TWO FOR THE SHOW: With Lara's homer in the top of the third inning with two outs Monday, Lara now has hit six of his team-high seven homers this season with two outs. In addition to that, three of his seven homers this season have been two-run blasts. Half of the Dominican-native's homers have come in the seventh inning or later this year.
SUN SPOTS: Jose Sanchez has been activated from the injured list. Sanchez was placed on the injured-list April 16 and in 10 games before landing on the injured list maintained a .233 average, while playing at short and hitting primarily in the nine hole.
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