Taveras Masterful in Middle Game Versus Rome
COLUMBIA, SC - Columbia received a standout performance from right-handed starter Willy Taveras (W, 4-5) on Tuesday night. The 21-year-old tied a season-high in strikeouts in a 5-2 win against Rome. Taveras set down eight Braves batters in six innings on the mound. His dominant performance places the Fireflies one win away from their first series sweep of 2019.
Taveras didn't start out the game too well, however. The first two Rome (26-32) batters the righty faced recorded hits and came around to score. Taveras would settle into a groove after the first. Columbia's (23-35) starter allowed just four hits and no walks over the next five innings.
The excellent outing by Taveras was followed up by equally impressive relief appearances from Billy Oxford (H, 2) and Tylor Megill (S, 2). The duo pitched a perfect final three frames to secure the series win for the Fireflies. Together, Columbia's pitching staff combined for 11 punchouts and no walks on the evening.
Columbia answered Rome's two-run first with a trio of runs in the bottom of the second. Third baseman Mark Vientos led off the inning with a single. He was followed by a double off the bat of Shervyen Newton. Juan Uriarte continued the rally with an RBI single into center, scoring Vientos from third.
Two batters later, Walter Rasquin grounded into a fielder's choice that brought Newton home. Hansel Moreno concluded the scoring with a sacrifice fly into right field that knocked in Uriarte. Eight Columbia hitters came to bat in the inning, and the three runs were all the Fireflies needed to get the victory.
With the win, Columbia improves to 11-4 against Rome in 2019.
Top 1: Greg Cullen doubles, Jeremy Fernandez scores...Henry Quintero hits a sacrifice fly into right, Cullen scores. ROM 2, COL 0
Bottom 2: Juan Uriarte singles up the middle, Mark Vientos scores...Walter Rasquin reaches on a fielder's choice, Shervyen Newton scores...Hansel Moreno hits a sacrifice fly to right, Uriarte advances and scores. COL 3, ROM 2
The series finale against Rome is set for Wednesday night at 7:05 ET. Columbia RHP Colin Holderman (3-1, 3.86) will get the start against Braves RHP Jose Olague (5-4, 3.39). With a win, the Fireflies would earn their first three-game sweep since June of 2018.
Wednesday evening is Fort Jackson Night at Segra Park. It's also a Trash the Poop Wag Along Wednesday, so don't forget to bring your dog to the ballpark for a night of fun with the Fireflies. You can listen in to the action at FireFliesLivestream.com or watch at MiLB.TV.
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