Thompson, Blue Crabs shut out Lancaster
La Plata High School graduate pitches team to third-straight win
When Daryl Thompson is in the zone, he is tough to beat.
Wednesday night, the 2003 La Plata High School graduate put on a stellar performance in front of the home crowd at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf as he pitched tossed eight innings of shutout ball on six hits with six strikeouts and one walk in leading the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs to a 2-0 victory over the Lancaster Barnstormers in the third of a four-game series.
“I just wanted to go out there and give us the best chance to win, but I felt confident in all my pitches so I would throw anything at any count and was comfortable and trusted all my pitches,” said Thompson, who threw 116 pitches, 86 for strikes. His record is now at 3-2 with a 3.48 ERA. “My catcher Luis Alen called a great game and my defense was solid. It was huge to take three games, hopefully we can get the sweep.”
Closer Cody Eppley shut the door in the top of the ninth, retiring the side with one strikeout to pick up his 10th save of the year which has him second in the Atlantic League through Wednesday’s action.
The Blue Crabs, who won 5-2 on Tuesday night, won their third straight game, all against Lancaster, and went for a fourgame sweep in Thursday’s series finale.
After being swept by Lancaster in a three-game series last week at Regency, the Blue Crabs (16-17 overall) have returned the favor with three
straight wins of their own this week and sat in third place, just two games behind the Barnstormers, in the Atlantic League’s Freedom Division after Wednesday’s action.
Southern Maryland kicks off the first of a four-game, threeday series at the New Britain on Friday scheduled for 6:35 p.m. The Blue Crabs and Bees will play a day-night doubleheader on Saturday and finish the series on Sunday.
“Daryl is unbelievable. He is a special player and tonight he got stronger as the game went on,” Blue Crabs manager John Harris said. “He pounds the zone, changes speeds and is just fun to watch. Winning three straight versus a team like Lancaster is huge for us.”
Southern Maryland had four hits in the bottom of the first Wednesday night off of Lancaster starter Rommie Lewis as seven batters came to the plate in the inning.
With one out, Edwin Garcia (2 hits) advanced on a single and Michael Snyder doubled to right field, putting Garcia on third. Zach Wilson’s sacrifice fly to center drove in Garcia for the game’s first run.
Cory Vaughn followed things up with a double to center, scoring Snyder. The Blue Crabs led 2-0 and the two runs was all that was needed to win the game.
Lewis suffered the loss for the Barnstormers, allowing both runs on nine hits with six strikeouts in six innings of work. He also walked three batters.
Tuesday, Southern Maryland scored four runs of its five in the first, spurred by a two-run single by Devon Rodriguez and a two-run triple by Zach Cone. Lancaster scored its first run of the game in the top of the third, but the Blue Crabs tacked on a run of their own on Alen’s RBI single, scoring Cone.
The Barnstormers scored another run in the sixth, but the Blue Crabs bullpen held them scoreless in the final three innings while allowing just one hit to help secure the win.
Starter Pat McCoy picked up his first win as a Blue Crab, giving up just two runs, one earned, on four hits with three strikeouts and three walks in six innings of work. Eppley got the save as he pitched a scoreless ninth.
Lancaster starter Bryan Evans suffered the loss, giving up all five runs on six hits with four walks and two strikeouts.
Brown named Blue Crabs hitting coach
Wednesday in a news release the team announced that Blue Crabs utility man Gary Brown was promoted to a player/ coach and will serve as the team’s hitting coach for the remainder of the season.
“We are honored to have Gary join the coaching staff here in Southern Maryland. He has been great in his time here both with what he provides on the field as well as serving as an ambassador for the club in the clubhouse and in the community,” said Blue Crabs general manager Courtney Knichel in the press release.
Serving as the Blue Crabs leadoff batter and outfielder this season, Brown entered Thursday’s finale with Lancaster with a .298 batting average, while leading the team in hits (36) and stolen bases (12). He was 0 for 3 with a walk in Wednesday’s win.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity to continue my work with the Blue Crabs,” said Brown in the press release. “I’m happy to further help my team win in every way possible for the remainder of this season and beyond.”
Brown also had a strong showing in 2016 as he batted toward the top of the lineup all season, hitting .249, with 10 home runs, 40 RBIs and 21 stolen bases.
Before arriving in Southern Maryland, Brown spent six seasons playing in affiliated baseball.
He was originally a first-round draft pick by the San Francisco Giants in the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft out of Cal State Fullerton. He also spent five seasons with the Giants organization, reaching the majors in 2014, playing in seven games for the Giants. For his career, Brown has is a .270 hitter, with 65 homers and 340 RBIs over eight professional seasons.
Daryl Thompson, 2003 La Plata High School graduate, threw eight innings of shutout ball in the Blue Crabs’ 2-0 win over Lancaster on Wednesday night. Thompson allowed just six hits and struck out six.