Hagerstown Suns: Game Notes
The Suns open up their final homestand vs the Lakewood BlueClaws tonight at 7:05 p.m. at Municipal Stadium. Hagerstown's RHP Tomas Alastre (5-12, 5.48 ERA) toes the rubber, while Lakewood stretches out LHP Erik Miller (1-0, 3.38 ERA).
SUNS DROP KANNAPOLIS FINALE 5-4: A sixth inning rally could not lift the Suns over the Intimidators in a 5-4 loss in Kannapolis Thursday evening. Jackson Stoeckinger (L, 2-3) got into trouble early, issuing a walk with the bases loaded to allow Kannapolis's first run to score in the home half of the first frame. The Intimidators (62-72, 34-32) would add two more in the third from Tyler Osik's second homer in as many games. Hagerstown (62-74, 32-34) mustered a comeback and clawed to within one, scoring a pair in the sixth. Jacob Rhinesmith and Israel Pineda hit back-to-back two out singles before Kyle Marinconz drew a walk to load the bases. After a mound visit, Cole Daily drove in a run dribbling a base knock back to the pitcher before Phil Caulfield drew a bases loaded walk to bring the score to 5-4. The Suns capitalized on a pair of miscues from Kannapolis starter Devon Perez and reliever Hansen Butler (W, 1-1) tossed wild pitches that led to runs in back-to-back innings.
TAKING THE BULL BY THE HORNS: Hagerstown's bullpen went another 3.1 scoreless innings last night. Since the start of August, the bullpen has been one of the top units in Minor League Baseball, surrendering just 25 earned runs across 98.2 innings (2.28 ERA).
THE LONGEST ROAD: Reid Schaller has found his home away from home in his last few outings. In his last 20 innings on the road, the Vanderbilt-product has allowed just one run to score and in the mean-time has given up just eight hits. Adding to that, he has been able to make a ton of bats miss, recording 22 strikeouts over the last 20 frames and a dizzying career-high eight in his outing last Thursday. Schaller was able to keep it going at Municipal Stadium Wednesday, striking out six more while allowing just one earned run.
STRUGGLING WITH RUNNERS ON: After last night's 1-for-10 performance with runners in scoring position, Hagerstown had just three hits in 38 opportunities with runners threatening in their series against Kannapolis. Hagerstown's three losses have been by one or two runs and in those games they've left more than 6 men in scoring position in each contest.
COOL LIKE CONNELL: Outfielder Justin Connell has tallied multiple hits in two of his last three games, while hitting safely in all three contests. After struggling to reach a .200 average in July, the Florida-native has hit at a .227 clip in August.
COUNTING IT DOWN: Hagerstown has just four games remaining this season, all of which are at Municipal Stadium. The Suns will give away one more bobblehead, a Paul "Ears" McNeal bobblehead August 31. In addition to that, the Suns will also have their final fireworks show August 30 following the game against Delmarva.
JOLLY JAKE: Jake Irvin has rolled right through the South Atlantic League in August. The righty has fanned 21 batters in as many innings while maintaining a 2.14 ERA in four starts for Hagerstown. While the Oklahoma-product is 1-1 over the stretch, he has recorded the fourth-lowest ERA in the league in that time, trailing just Kannapolis's Sam Long, Delmarva's Ryan Wilson and Charleston's Roansy Contreras.
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