Mudcats Swept After 6-4 Series Finale Loss to Dash
ZEBULON, NC - Devin Hairston had a RBI double in the second, Brice Turang doubled and scored in the fifth and Eddie Silva tripled and scored in the sixth, but the Mudcats lost a one-run lead in the sixth while losing their fifth straight game 6-4 to the Dash on Thursday night at Five County Stadium.
The Dash (25-27, 63-53) led first after getting a home run from Tyler Frost in the first, but Carolina (21-32, 60-62) came back with a two-out, RBI double from Hairston while tying the game at 1-1 in the second. Turang later doubled and scored on an error in the fifth as the Mudcats took a 2-1 lead, but the Dash answered back with four runs in the sixth and one more in the seventh while taking Thursday's series finale 6-4. Carolina did score twice more in the sixth, but ended up falling short in the game while losing their fifth straight.
Frost's homer in the first was his 12th and the 15th allowed this season by starter Matt Smith. That homer, however, was the only run allowed for Smith in his start as he worked through five innings with one run allowed on four hits. Smith ended up without a decision while also walking one and totaling four strikeouts on 67 pitches (43 strikes).
Dash starter Konnor Pilkington also finished without a decision as he left with the game tied 1-1 after the fourth. Pilkington allowed four hits in his start with two of those coming in the second when Trever Morrison singled and scored on Hairston's double. Morrison went 1-for-4 in the game with a run and Hairston was 1-for-4 with a RBI.
Pilkington struck out five, walked two and allowed a run on four hits in his four inning start for the Dash. He was later followed by reliever Andrew Perez who saw the Mudcats take the lead in the fifth after Payton Henry forced in Turang from second by reaching on a two-out error at third by Yeyson Yrizarri. The error was the first of three in the game for Yrizarri and led to Carolina taking a 2-1 lead.
Carolina's 2-1 lead was short-lived though as the Dash went on to rally for four runs and three hits in the sixth against reliever Cody Beckman while taking a 5-2 lead in the game. Frost started that rally with a hit to short and Andrew Vaughn followed with a walk. Beckman (L, BS, 3-4, 4.50) then struck out Jameson Fisher before then allowing one other walk and a run scoring single to Mitch Roman. That hit tied the game at 2-2 and a three-run double from Johan Cruz moments later broke the tie while giving Winston-Salem the 5-2 lead.
Beckman ended up with the loss and blown save while allowing four runs and three hits over 2/3 of an inning. He also finished with two walks and one strikeout while failing to get through the sixth. Peter Strzelecki followed and wound up working through the rest of the frame while leaving an inherited runner on base. He went on to stay in for the next two frames and ended up going two and 2/3 innings with two strikeouts and a run allowed on three hits.
Perez (W, 2-2, 1.44), meanwhile, stayed in the game for part of the sixth before leaving after allowing two more runs (one earned) and seeing Carolina pull within one of the lead at 5-4. Silva started the Carolina sixth with a triple to center and scored moments later on a wild pitch lost by Perez. Pat McInerney followed Silva with a walk and later scored with help of Yrizarri's second error of the game. That error came on a grounder hit to third by Hairston and went on to score McInerney with two outs in the frame.
Perez left the game following Yrizarri's error, but ended up earning the victory for the Dash as he worked through an inning and 2/3 with two strikeouts, one walk and three runs (one earned) allowed on two hits. Jacob Lindgren followed and worked through an inning and 1/3 scoreless with two strikeouts while earning his third hold. Will Kincanon then pitched the final two frames and struck out three while earning the save.
Carolina was down 5-4 after their two run sixth, but Strzelecki allowed a run in the seventh while seeing the Dash go up 6-4 in the game. That lone run scored after Frost doubled and crossed on a two-out RBI single from Fisher in the seventh. Strzelecki went on to finish the seventh without any other damage and later returned for the scoreless eighth. Robbie Hitt then finished the game for the Mudcats while striking out one and allowing one hit in the ninth.
Frost was a triple shy of the cycle in the game for Winston-Salem and went 3-for-5 with three runs and one RBI. Cruz was 1-for-4 with three RBI, Fisher went 1-for-4 with one RBI and both Steele Walker and Roman had two hits in the game for the Dash.
The Mudcats offense totaled four extra-base hits in the game with Silva tallying a triple and Hairston, Turang and Tristen Lutz all collecting doubles. Carolina, however, also went 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position in the loss and left eight men on base.
The loss resulted in a series sweep for the Dash and was Carolina's fifth straight. It also dropped Carolina to 1-5 in their penultimate 2019 home stand in Zebulon.
The Mudcats will next play on Friday night in Lynchburg when they take on the Hillcats at City Stadium. Friday's game will begin at 6:00 p.m. in Lynchburg and will air on the Mudcats Radio Network, The Big Dawg 98.5 FM and online at carolinamudcats.com via TuneIn Radio.
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