Daily Recap: 8/23
Cats One Better Again, Nip Aeros 3-2
NEW BRITAIN, CT – Dustin Martin hit a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth, lifting New Britain to a 3-2 win over Akron before 6,218 fans at New Britain Stadium Saturday night. The Rock Cats improved to 57-74 while the Aeros fell to 75-59. Akron’s magic number to clinch a playoff spot did fall to three however, as Harrisburg lost at home to Portland.
Wes Hodges staked the Aeros to an early lead just three batters in, booming a solo home run off the scoreboard in left for a 1-0 advantage. It was the 15th dinger of the season for Hodges and gave him 90 RBI for the year, moving him into second place on the franchise single season RBI list. Chan Perry is the record holder with 96 RBI in 1997.
Bronson Sardinha threw out Steve Tolleson at the plate in the bottom of the first to preserve the lead, and back-to-back doubles from hot-hitting Matt Whitney and Ryan Goleski pushed the margin to 2-0 in the top of the second. The offense would fall quiet after that however, as the Aeros entered into a funk that saw them strand a runner in scoring position in each of the next six innings.
New Britain got on the board in the bottom of the fourth when Danny Valencia singled with one away and scored on Drew Butera’s two-out triple. Valencia’s home run tied it at 2-2 in the sixth, and Martin’s homer in the eighth off reliever Neil Wagner accounted for the winning margin. Akron had one final chance in the ninth, but Josh Rodriguez grounded out with Brandon Chaves at second and Bronson Sardinha struck out to end the game after Chaves had advanced to third.
Ben Julianel (3-2) earned the win with two scoreless innings of relief, allowing no hits and striking out four. Wagner (0-1) suffered the loss. Hodges and Goleski paced the offense with two hits each.
The finale in the three-game series and six-game road trip is set for 1:35 p.m. Sunday, as Akron right-hander Kevin Dixon (8-10, 4.59 ERA) takes on New Britain’s Jay Rainville (8-9, 6.22 ERA). The game broadcast begins at 1:20 p.m. on SportsRadio 1350 AM and online at www.akronaeros.com.
K-Tribe Draws Over 130,000 fans to Grainger Stadium
2,525 fans saw Kinston play their final regular season home game, an 8-2 loss to Wilmington, bringing Kinston’s 2008 attendance total to 130,406 fans. The total number of fans is the most to see the K-Tribe play since the 2001 season and more than 15,000 fans than last season.
The K-Tribe got off to a great start when Beau Mills singled home Lucas Montero in the bottom of the first inning. Kinston would erase a 2-1 deficit in the bottom of the fifth inning when Carlos Santana hit a sacrifice fly to score Jerad Head. Head was 2-for-4 for Kinston. The bats would then grow cold as Kinston managed just two hits from the sixth inning on. Wilmington would plate runs in the sixth and seventh inning, blowing the game open with four runs in the top of the ninth. Wilmington pounded Kinston pitching for 15 hits on the night.
Kinston reliever Kyle Landis (0-1) took the loss for Kinston, giving up a run in the sixth inning. Ed Cegerra (6-7) got the win for Wilmington. Kinston managed just six hits on the night.
Kinston’s eight straight losses have put them 3 ½ games behind Winston-Salem for the final playoff spot in the Carolina League Southern Division with eight games to play. After a Sunday off day, Kinston will face Winston-Salem for a very important four game series at Ernie Shore Field. Game time 7pm on Monday in Winston-Salem.
SPIKES TAKE ONE FROM THE SCRAPPERS 2-1
It was the Spikes that scored first on Saturday when Ciro Rosero delivered a RBI double and after the first it was 1-0 State College. The Spikes scored again in the fourth after Jeremy Farrell singled then stole second and scored on Kyle Morgan’s RBI single and it was now 2-0 Spikes after four innings.
In the sixth the Scrappers put two on with no out, but could not score and we went to the seventh still 2-0 Spikes. In the seventh relief pitching from both teams kept the score the same so we went to the eighth 2-0 Spikes.
In the eighth, Cord Phelps led off with a walk, Lonnie Chisenhall then doubled to left, but Phelps was thrown out at the plate for the first out of the inning. Robby Alcombrack then flew out to right field and Brock Simpson struck out to end the threat and we went to the ninth 2-0 Spikes.
In the ninth the Scrappers scored a run on a RBI single by Ryan Blair, but it was not enough and the Spikes took game one of three by a final score of 2-1.
In Other Games...
- Buffalo lost 5-4. LHP David Huf went 5.2 innings and allowed 3 runs on 10 hits, no walks and had 4 strikeouts. RHP John Meloan went a scoreless inning and struckout the side. Catcher Chris Gimenez went 1-for-3 at the plate with a HR and 4 RBI.
- Lake County won 6-5. RHP Joey Mahalic went 4 innings and allowed 4 runs on 7 hits, 2 walks and had 4 strikeouts. RHP Gary Campfield went 2.2 scoreless innings of relief. SS Mark Thompson went 2-for-5, LF Dustin Realini went 2-for-4 with an RBI, OF MattBrown went 1-for-3 with 2 RBI, and catcher Adam Davis went 1-for-4 with a 2B.
- The GCL Indians were postponed due to wet grounds.
- The DSL Indians lost 4-2. RHP Jopse Campos went 5 innings and allowed 1 run on 7 hits, 1 walk and had 1 strikeout. OF Darling Read went 2-for-4 with a 2B and 2 RBI.