West Virginia Power 7, Delmarva Shorebirds 3
The Power overpowered the Shorebirds, posting 13 hits to Delmarva’s 4. 1B Matt Curry and C Elias Diaz let the offense with 3 hits each, and Curry also contributed 3 RBI. Colton Cain earned his 4th win of the season with 6 innings of work, allowing all 3 runs on 2 hits and 2 walks, with 4 strikeouts.
The Power got onto the scoreboard in the top of the 1st, when SS Drew Maggi led of with a walk, then scored on Curry’s first double. LF Rogelios Noris also began the 2nd inning with a walk. Diaz’s first single moved Noris over to third base, but Diaz was throw out trying to steal second base. 2B Andy Vasquez brought in Noris with an RBI single. 3B Eric Avila also singled, and two wild pitches plated Vasquez and put Avila on third base. Avila scored on Maggi’s sacrifice fly, for a 4-0 lead. CF Mel Rojas and RF Dan Grovatt also singled in the 2nd inning, but were left on base.
Cain gave up only a walk over the first two innings, but the Shorebirds got to him in the 3rd. A double and an RBI single scored their first run, then a 2-run homer brought the Shorebirds to within one run of the Power, 4-3. Cain shut Delmarva down after the third inning, though. He worked around a walk and a batter reaching on a fielding error in the 4th, then retired 7 batters in a row to finish his inning.
The Power picked up some insurance in the 4th. Maggi started the rally with a single, and he stole second base. Grovatt walked, and both Maggi and Grovatt scored on Curry’s second double of the game. Curry scored on DH Justin Howard’s triple into center field, and the Power had a 7-3 lead.
The Power batters put at least one runner on base in all of the rest of their at-bats except the 8th inning, but could not get any of them around to score. Two timely double plays and a runner caught stealing hurt the Power. The came closest to scoring again in the top of the 9th, when CF Kevin Mort (who had replaced Rojas) reached base on a fielding error, and Grovatt singled. A grounder by Curry forced Grovatt out at second base, but a throwing error let Curry go to second base, while Mort stopped at third. Howard walked to load the bases. Noris lifted a fly to center field, and it became a double play when Mort was thrown out at the plate.
Trent Stevenson pitched 2 scoreless innings after relieving Cain to begin the 7th. He gave up a single in the 8th, but removed him from the bases with a double play. Victor Black returned to action after spending all of the season so far and most of the 2010 season on the DL with shoulder and arm issues. He had a great return, setting down the Shorebirds in order in the bottom of the 9th with three ground outs.
Daytona Cubs 6, Bradenton Marauders 4
Both starting pitchers struck out 10 batters in the game. Phillip Irwin did it in 6 innings, while allowing 4 runs on 6 hits. Daytona’s Dae-Eun Rhee struck out his in 5 innings, allowing 2 runs on 5 hits. RF Robbie Grossman and LF Cole White had 2 hits each, with a homer for White and also for CF Evan Chambers. It was not enough for the win, though, as the Cubs broke a 4-4 tie with 2 runs in the bottom of the 7th.
The Marauders put runners on base in the first two innings, but did not score. They got onto the scoreboard in the top of the third on White’s solo homer.
Irwin began his start by striking out 5 of the first 6 batters he faced. He hit a batter to begin the 3rd, then erased him with a double play, and struck out the third batter of the inning. The Cubs figured Irwin out in the 4th, with a single, an RBI double, and a 2-run homer, to take a 3-1 lead. A walk and a single put Cubs on the corners, but Irwin got out of the inning with another strikeout.
Chambers made it a 3-2 game in the 4th, with his solo home run. Then the Marauders took the lead in the top of the 6th. 2B Jarek Cunningham led off with a double, and he advanced to third base on Grossman’s single. After an out, 3B Elevys Gonzalez tripled into center field, plating both Cunningham and Grossman. The Marauders led 4-3.
Irwin retired the side in order in the 5th (one more strikeout), but the Cubs tied the score in the bottom of the 6th on a single and an RBI double (and two more strikeouts).
Brett Sinkbeil relieved Irwin to begin the bottom of the 7th. A single, a wild pitch put a runner on 2nd to start the inning. After two outs, an RBI single and a fielding error by Chambers scored a run, and another RBI single added an insurance run for a 6-4 lead. Sinkbeil pitched a scoreless 8th inning, working around a fielding error by White. The Marauders could not answer the Cubs. They loaded the bases in the 8th on a single and two walks, but a strike out ended the rally without a run scoring.