Cunningham Homers Twice; Power Hold On For The Win
Bradenton Marauders 13, Jupiter Hammerheads 2
2B Jarek Cunningham drove in 5 runs for the Marauders, who posted a total of 13 hits in an error-filled game. After a quiet 1st inning for both teams, the Marauders began the bombardment with a solo homer by LF David Rubinstein in the 2nd. 1B Cole White followed the homer with a double, and he scored on 3B Elevys Gonzalez’s RBI single. Bradenton starter Jeff Inman allowed just a walk and a single over the first 3 innings, then gave up a walk, a double, and a triple for 2 runs to tie the game in the 4th.
Inman was relieved by Matt McSwain, who shut down the Hammerheads for the rest of the game. He struck out the next three batters to finish the 4th inning, then proceeded to strike out 8 more Jupiter batters over the next 5 innings, while scattering 3 hits. He also had to work around two fielding errors and a throwing error.
Cunningham broke the tie in the top of the 5th with a 2-run homer that followed a pair of errors which had put RF Robbie Grossman on second base. The Marauders added 3 runs in the 7th. C Carlos Paulino led off with a walk, then a single by Gonzalez and a sacrifice bunt by Grossman put both runners into scoring position. Cunningham was intentionally walked to load the bases. CF Evan Chambers also walked, forcing in Paulino with a run. A single by DH Calvin Anderson drove in Gonzalez, though Chambers was thrown out at third. Rubinstein doubled, driving in Cunningham, but Anderson was thrown out at the plate, ending the inning. That gave the Marauders a 7-2 lead.
The Marauders sent 11 batters to the plate in the big 9th inning. Cunningham drove in both Gonzalez (double) and Grossman (walk) with his 3-run homer. With one out, Anderson and Rubinstein worked back-to-back walks, and after a fly out, SS Kelson Brown loaded the bases with a single. A wild pitch plated Anderson, and Paulino’s single plated Rubinstein. Gonzalez doubled, for his 4th hit of the game (2 doubles, 2 singles), bringing in Brown with the 6th run of the inning. Rubinstein had 3 hits (single, double, homer) and each member of the lineup reached base safely at least once.
West Virginia Power 6, Augusta Green Jackets 5
The Power broke a 5-5 tie with a run in the top of the 9th, on a double by DH Matt Curry, a sacrifice bunt by 3B Eric Avila, and a sacrifice fly by 1B Justin Howard. Reliever Casey Sadler came on to pitch the bottom of the 9th, and he retired the Green Jackets in order, to preserve the win and earn his first Save of the season.
Augusta got onto the scoreboard first with a solo homer in the bottom of the 1st. The Power tied the game in the top of the 2nd. Singles by Howard, C Elias Diaz, and LF Rogelios Noris loaded the bases, then 2B Kevin Mort was walked, forcing in the run. Augusta got to starter Zack Von Rosenberg again in the 4th, with back-to-back lead-off doubles for one run, then a single and a sacrifice fly for the second run. Another single put an Augusta runner on third, and he stole home in a double steal, giving Augusta a 4-1 lead.
The Power came right back with 4 runs in the top of the 5th, as the first five Power batters reached base safely. SS Gift Ngoepe led off with a walk, then three singles, by CF Mel Rojas, Curry, and Avila, along with an error in center field, brought in 3 runs. Howard added the fourth run with an RBI double, and the Power had regained the lead, 5-4. But Augusta tied the score again in the bottom of the inning with a single and an RBI double.
Von Rosenberg was responsible for all 5 runs in his 5 innings of work. He allowed 9 hits, no walks, and struck out 5 batters. He was relieved by Trent Stevenson, who pitched 2 scoreless innings, then by Brooks Pounders, who kept the tie going with a perfect bottom of the 8th, including 2 strikeouts.
The Power threatened in the 7th, when Curry led off with a triple, but he was stranded at third base. Noris doubled and Mort walked in the 8th, but they too were left on base. Then in the top of the 9th, Curry doubled and scored the go-ahead run, and the Power had the win.