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Preview: Hoppers Back at Home

August 7, 2018 - South Atlantic League (SAL) - Greensboro Grasshoppers News Release

Greensboro Grasshoppers

20-20 Second Half, 54-55 - Miami Marlins

vs. West Virginia Power

19-23 Second Half, 56-52 - Pittsburgh Pirates

Tuesday - 7:00 p.m.

First National Bank Field - Greensboro, N.C.

Game #110 of 136

LH Daniel Castano (3-2, 2.13) vs. RH Sergio Cubilete (3-4, 4.85)

Today's Preview: The Grasshoppers (A, Marlins) return to First National Bank Field after a water-logged road trip to Rome and Kannapolis that saw four straight days of baseball rained out. Greensboro is hosting the West Virginia Power (A, Pirates) for the second and final time this season. The Hoppers took two of three when the Power visited Greensboro for a 3-game series in early June.

Hoppers Hurler: Daniel Castano, 23, makes his seventh start for the Grasshoppers after opening this year with Class A-Advanced Jupiter. He is coming off 6.0 scoreless innings as part of a shutout win on July 27 vs. Hickory. That night, he fanned seven while issuing his first three walks with Greensboro in 2018. Castano has now struck out 43 batters compared to three walks in 38.0 innings over six starts. Over his last two starts, he has worked 13.0 consecutive scoreless innings, last giving up a run on July 15 vs. Asheville. He has not faced a White Sox affiliate in his career. The left-hander began 2018 with a 5-6 record and 5.65 ERA (36 ER/57.1 IP), 37 strikeouts compared to 22 walks, and a .315 average against in 11 games (11 starts) in the Florida State League before a pair of rehab appearances with the GCL Marlins. His combined stats this season are 5-7 with a 5.43 ERA (40 ER/66.1 IP) in 13 games (12 starts). The Marlins acquired Castano on Dec. 14, 2017, as part of the trade that sent former Grasshopper and Major League outfielder Marcell Ozuna to the Cardinals. St. Louis selected Castano in the 19th round of the June 2016 First-Year Player Draft out of Baylor. He spent last season in the New York-Penn League, going 9-3 with a 2.57 ERA (26 ER/91.0 IP) and 81 strikeouts in 14 games (14 starts) with the State College Spikes.

Last Time Out: Greensboro pitchers combined to throw a 7-inning no-hitter in Game 1 of Sunday's twin bill at Kannapolis in a 2-1 win. Starting pitcher Taylor Braley worked 5.0 scoreless, hitless innings, working around two walks while striking out four. Jeremy Ovalle walked two batters and plunked another while recording two outs in the sixth inning, leading to an Intimidators run without the benefit of a hit. Michael Mertz tossed the final 1.1 innings of hitless ball, striking out two and walking two to complete the gem. Kannapolis earned a measure of revenge, scoring a 9-0 win in Game 2 of Sunday's doubleheader.

No-Hitter History: Sunday's no-hitter against Kannapolis is Greensboro's first since April 23, 2012, when Jose Fernandez combined with Gregory Nappo and Kevin Cravey in a 6-0 win over Hickory for the first no-hitter in Grasshoppers history. Prior to that, Greensboro's last no-hitter came during the Bats era, when Jason Vargas spun a 9-inning no-no on Aug. 24, 2004, against the Savannah Sand Gnats.

Low-Hit Games: Prior to Sunday's no-hitter in Greensboro's 2-1 win at Kannapolis (Game 1 of a doubleheader) the Grasshoppers had tossed a pair of 1-hit games this season, most recently on July 29 vs. Hickory in a 2-1 win over the Crawdads. On April 16, Greensboro 1-hit Lakewood in a 1-0 win at FirstEnergy Park.

Five and Out: Greensboro saw its season-high-tying 5-game winning streak come to an end on Saturday at Kannapolis. The Grasshoppers, who won five straight from July 26-30 had also won five in a row June 15-23. The Grasshoppers' longest winning streak last season came May 4-11 when they won six straight. The team's longest winning streaks since 2005 include:

Wins: Season (Dates) Notes

10: 2014 (6/6 - 6/15) Won final 10 games into break to beat HAG for First Half title

9: 2016 (6/30 - 7/8) Included two series sweeps, at Lakewood and vs. West Virginia

9: 2011 (8/24 - 9/3) Went 11-1 to end season, making playoffs, winning championship

9: 2011 (4/17 - 4/26) Helped overcome 3-7 start, stayed above .500 rest of First Half

9: 2007 (7/19 - 7/27) Streak started with back-to-back shutouts, included three total

8: 2016 (5/16 - 5/23) Held opponents to two or fewer runs in seven of eight games

7: 2014 (6/28 - 7/4) Included wins of 15-12 @ASH, 20-2 @ASH, 16-12 @LEX

6: 2017 (8/12 - 8/16)

6: 2014 (5/22 - 5/29)

6: 2013 (5/25 - 5/30) Scored 11 or more runs three times during streak

6: 2012 (8/5 - 8/11) Four of six games decided by one run

6: 2012 (5/13 - 5/18) Second winning streak of at least six games that month

6: 2012 (5/2 - 5/8) Pushed record to 23-8 to open season

6: 2012 (4/17 - 4/24)

6: 2011 (8/8 - 8/14)

One Run Wonders: Greensboro improved to 23-16 (.590) in games decided by one run in 2018 with Sunday's 2-1 win at Kannapolis in Game 1 of a doubleheader. The Hoppers have the second-best winning percentage in 1-run games in the SAL this season, behind 23-15 Lakewood (.605). The Grasshoppers are tied with BlueClaws for the second-most wins by one run in the Sally League behind only 24-17 Kannapolis (.585).

What A Run of Rain: Greensboro did not play baseball for four straight days due to rain from July 31 through Aug. 3, having two games at Rome cancelled and two games at Kannapolis postponed. This was the longest stretch of rained out games in team history (since 2005). The Grasshoppers and Intimidators will make up one of the rained out games when Greensboro returns to Kannapolis during a 4-game series Aug. 18-21.


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South Atlantic League Stories from August 7, 2018


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