Hagerstown Suns: Game Notes
Hagerstown continues their final series of the 2019 series with the Lakewood BlueClaws tonight at 6:05 p.m. at Municipal Stadium. The Suns go with RHP Jake Irvin (7-8, 3.97 ERA) on the bump, while Lakewood sends RHP Rafi Gonell (4-2, 4.44 ERA) to the hill.
SUNS WALK-OFF WILD GAME VS LAKEWOOD: Armond Upshaw scored from a sacrifice bunt by Jackson Cluff and a throwing error from pitcher Taylor Lehman to give the Suns a 3-2 walk-off victory over Lakewood Friday evening at Municipal Stadium. Cluff's sacrifice allowed the third run to score off Lehman (L, 2-2) in his four innings of work vs the Suns (63-74, 33-34). Tomas Alastre got the start for Hagerstown and earned his sixth quality start of the season, allowing just one earned run (two total) through six frames. The game was not that simple though. Lakewood (57-78, 28-37) hit out of order in two spots in the line-up and in the fourth inning, it cost Hunter Stovall his second homer of the season. He hit a shot into the Lakewood bullpen that would have put Lakewood up 2-0, but resulted in an out because he had swapped spots with Ben Pelletier.
TAKING THE BULL BY THE HORNS: Christian Vann tossed three scoreless innings out of the bullpen 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 101.2 innings (2.21 ERA).
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.
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 having three hits in 38 at-bats with runners in scoring position against Kannapolis, the Suns put together a 3-for-10 mark vs Lakewood to open the series yesterday. That makes Hagerstown 6-for-48 with runners threatening in their last five games
COUNTING IT DOWN: Hagerstown has just three 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.
JUST ENJOY THE SHOW: Last night, third baseman and 2017 Hagerstown Sun Sheldon Neuse made his major league debut for the Oakland Athletics. He finished 0-for-3 with a walk in his first big league game. Oakland acquired the third baseman from the Nationals in the July 2017 trade that brought Ryan Madsen and Sean Doolittle to the Nationals. Neuse hit .291 in 77 games for Hagerstown in the 2017 season while adding nine homers and 51 RBI before the trade that sent him to the California League in the Athletics' system.
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