Winston-Salem Dash: Game Notes (July 14 at Down East)
Looking to shake off a two-game slide, Winston-Salem continues its three-game series against the Down East Wood Ducks on Sunday at Grainger Stadium. First pitch is set for 1 p.m..
WINSTON-SALEM DASH (10-14, 48-40) at Down East Wood Ducks (15-9, 65-29)
RHP Jonathan Stiever (2-2, 2.08 ERA) vs. RHP Noah Bremer (1-0, 3.41 ERA)
1 p.m. - Grainger Stadium (Kinston, N.C.)
Game #89 (Away Game #45)
WINSTON DROPS OPENER 4-3
Despite building an early lead in Saturday's contest at Grainger Stadium, Winston-Salem dropped its series opener 4-3 against the Down East Wood Ducks. The Dash started the contest by scoring a run in each of the first three frames against Alex Eubanks. Leading off the ballgame, Tyler Frost smacked his team-leading 11th homer to dead center to put Winston-Salem on top 1-0. In the second, Craig Dedelow singled with one out. Following a strikeout by Carlos Perez, Jordan George blooped a run-scoring double down the left-field line to make it a 2-0 contest. Steele Walker added to lead in the third with a sacrifice fly, but that started a stretch of 21 consecutive batters retired for the Wood Ducks between Eubanks, Scott Engler and Michael Matuella. Meanwhile, Down East scored four unanswered runs to earn the win.
RECAPPING THE FIRST HALF
With a victory against Carolina on June 16, Winston-Salem clinched its third-best first-half winning percentage (.594) in the Dash era (2009-present). The Dash also ended the first half in second place in the Southern Division. By posting a .594 winning percentage, the 2019 team trailed only the 2012 club (.637) and 2010 team (.614) in first-half finishes.
FIVE OUT OF 10 IN THE SECOND HALF
In the Dash's history (2009-present), Winston-Salem has had the best second-half record in the Southern Division five separate times. These years include 2009 (tied with Salem), 2010, 2012, 2015 and 2018 (tied with Buies Creek).
AN ALUMNUS SHINES AT A NEW LEVEL
Luis Robert, who began the season with Winston-Salem, made his Triple-A debut on Thursday and is now 6-for-13 with two homers and eight RBIs in three games with the Charlotte Knights. Rated the fifth-best prospect in baseball per MLB Pipeline, Robert posted a .453/.512/.920 batting line in 19 games for the Dash before earning a promotion to Double-A Birmingham. Across three levels, the 21-year-old is hitting .354 with 18 homers in 78 games.
A HOOSIER ON THE HILL
Right-hander Jonathan Stiever will make his fifth start with the Dash on Sunday. Stiever has made four consecutive quality starts to begin his Dash tenure. The former Indiana Hoosier limited Frederick to just three hits in seven shutout innings on July 9, striking out six in the effort. A fifth-round pick in the 2018 MLB Draft, Stiever was promoted to Winston-Salem from Low-A Kannapolis at the start of the second half. In 18 starts between the two affiliates, the 22-year-old has struck out 104 batters in 100.0 innings pitched. Stiever was a star football player at Cedarburg High School. In 2014, he was named the state Football Player of the Year in Wisconsin by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
THE GIVE AND TAKE ON OFFENSE
Despite scoring just 53 runs over the last 17 games, the Dash are the only team in the Carolina League that is in the top four in batting average (4th, .251), on-base percentage (1st, .334) and slugging percentage (2nd, .386). Meanwhile, the Dash are third in homers (65) and fifth in runs scored (397). However, in the second half, the Dash have struggled with runners in scoring position, hitting at a .220 (45-for-205) clip.
NOT A LOT OF SEPARATION
Through the first 24 games of the second half, the Dash have not played a contest where the margin of victory or defeat was more than four runs. Here's the breakdown of the Dash's record in these games:
One-run games: 4-6
Two-run games: 3-4
Three-run games: 2-2
Four-run games: 1-2
Frost's leadoff shot marked the first for Winston-Salem since Frost accomplished the feat on June 15 at Carolina...Tyler Johnson, who tossed two scoreless innings on Saturday, pitched for the Dash in 2018, and he recorded the final out of a 5-3 win on September 3, 2018, to clinch Winston a second-half Southern Division title...The White Sox have dropped two straight since the All-Star Break.
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