Hill Throws Complete Game Shutout as Suns Split DH with Hickory
Hagerstown, MD - Brigham Hill earned a win in his fourth-straight start with a shutout as the Hagerstown Suns split a doubleheader and four-game series with the Hickory Crawdads on Sunday afternoon at Historic Municipal Stadium. The Suns are 16-25 in the second half and 43-66 overall this season. Monday is a league-wide off day while the Suns will start a seven-game road trip beginning in Augusta on Tuesday.
In game one, the Suns struck first in the third against Crawdads starter Tyler Thomas. With two outs, Armond Upshaw doubled to center and scored when Cole Freeman doubled to left to make it a 1-0 Hagerstown advantage. The run would be the only score of the game for either team, with the Suns going onto win by the same score.
Hill (4-3) spun seven shutout innings while allowing four hits, one walk, and striking out six hitters in his first complete game of his career in a win. The complete-game shutout is the first for a Suns starter this season.
In game two, the Crawdads scored first against Suns starter Sam Held in the second. Tyreque Reed led off with a double and moved to third on a wild pitch. With one out, Preston Scott skied a sacrifice fly to right field to plate Reed and give Hickory a 1-0 lead.
Hagerstown answered with a run of their own in the latter half of the second against Hickory starter Noah Bremer. With one out, Alex Flores singled to right, stole second, and scored when Juan Pascal singled to right to tie the game, 1-1.
Hickory added two runs in the third inning against Held. With one out, Tyler Ratliff and Yonny Hernandez singled to put runners on first and second. Back-to-back wild pitches from Held allowed Ratliff to score, giving the Crawdads the lead, 2-1, while Hernandez advanced to third. Justin Jacobs was hit by a pitch to put runners at the corners and Ryan Dorow lifted a sacrifice fly to center, plating Hernandez to increase the Hickory lead to 3-1.
The Suns pulled within one in the fifth against Bremer in his last inning of work. With one out, Kameron Esthay belted his 10th home run of the season to cut the Crawdads' lead to 3-2. The ball traveled 405-feet over the wall in right and into the parking lot behind the stadium.
The Crawdads tacked on two more runs in the sixth inning against Suns reliever Phil Morse. Reed singled to center and was replaced by Miguel Aparicio as a pinch runner with two outs. Scott singled to left to advance Aparicio to second and Yohel Pozo singled to right to score Aparicio, increasing the Hickory lead to 4-2. Sam Huff doubled to right, plating Scott from third to make it 5-2 while Pozo advanced to third on the play. The Suns could not rally in the seventh, losing game two of the twin-bill and splitting the doubleheader.
Held (3-6) spun four innings while allowing three runs on four hits striking out three in a loss. Carlos Pena pitched a scoreless inning with a walk and a strike out. Morse pitched an inning, giving up two runs on four hits. Frankie Bartow pitched a scoreless seventh inning allowing a hit.
Notes: Hill's six strikeouts tied his season-high for the third time... His 84 pitches is a new season-high, surpassing his 81 pitch performance on July 9 at West Virginia... Last time the Suns won 1-0 was the first game of a doubleheader on July 26 against Delmarva... Hill recorded the first complete game shutout of his career... He extended his win streak to four games... It's the first complete-game shutout for the Suns pitching staff this season... The complete game is the third by a Suns starter in 2018... All of the complete games this season by Hagerstown pitching have been in seven inning games... Flores logged his eighth multi-hit game of the year... Esthay hit his 10th home run of the season... He's the only Suns hitter with double-digit home runs this season... Esthay recorded his ninth multi-hit game of the season... Freeman extended his hit streak to three games... Upshaw increased his hit-streak to five games... Hagerstown is 2-4-7 in doubleheaders this season... Hagerstown hasn't played a nine-inning game in August... They've played a 10-inning game on Aug 1 versus Lexington and four seven-inning games versus Hickory... Monday is a league-wide off day... Hagerstown will begin a 7-game road trip starting with Augusta on Tuesday.
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