Blue Crabs get swept
Four-run third inning leads Ducks to series finale win
Coming off back-to back series wins the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs weren’t able to keep that momentum in the Atlantic League three-game road tilt in Long Island at Bethgate Ballpark in Central Islip, N.Y.
The Ducks shut out the Blue Crabs 10-0, giving up just three hits in the first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader and took the second game by a score of 4-2 to clinch the series win. Long Island wrapped up the three-game series on Wednesday night with a 4-1 victory in the series finale.
Long Island (53-49 overall, 17-15 second half), which won its sixth straight game, led Bridgeport by a 1/2 game for the top spot in the Liberty Division standings entering Thursday.
The Ducks scored all four runs in the bottom of the third frame off of Blue Crabs starting pitcher Gaby Hernandez.
Delta Cleary Jr. ripped a two-run double to start the rally. Cleary then scored on Marc Krauss’ RBI single. Later in the inning, Alex Burg capped things off with a RBI double, bringing Krauss to home plate.
Ducks starter Henderson Alvarez picked up the win, giving up just one run which came on a Cory Vaughn RBI double in the top of the third. He allowed just four hits with two strikeouts in five innings of work, while the bullpen kept the Blue Crabs off the scoreboard the rest of the way, allowing just one hit. Amalio Diaz delivered with his second save in two days.
Hernandez got the loss, giving up four runs on seven hits with eight strikeouts. He also walked three batters. At the plate, the Blue Crabs left nine runners on base.
Southern Maryland (51-50, 13-19) returned home to face Long Island again in a four-game series which was scheduled to kick off Thursday and run through Sunday. On Monday, the Blue Crabs are scheduled to host Lancaster in a makeup game for the Freedom Division first-half championship. Then they will head to New Britain for a three-game series starting Tuesday.
“It was a rough series,” said Blue Crabs manager James Frisbie. “We had a tough doubleheader [Tuesday] and
[on Wednesday] left too many runners on base. Long Island are playing well in the second half. We just have to get some consistent offense and get a rhythm going. The guys are playing hard. We just have to bounce back.”
The story of the first game was Ducks starter Alfredo Simon, who shut down the Blue Crabs and came within two outs of collecting a no-hitter. The
right-handed ace struck out seven and walked just two batters over seven innings. After retiring 11 straight batters, Blue Crabs Michael Snyder broke up Simon’s no-hitter on a one-out single in the seventh. Simon threw 108 pitches, 65 for strikes.
Long Island, which finished with 13 hits in the game, was led by Giovanny Alfonzo with three hits and two RBIs, while Ruben Gotay (solo home run), Anthony Vega and Dan Lyons also finished with two hits. Alex Songco
added a hit with three RBIs and a double.
Blue Crabs starter Eric Fornataro suffered the loss, giving up six runs on nine hits and a walk in three innings. He struck out two.
In game two, Long Island scored the first run of the game in the third inning when Alex Burg scored from third on a passed ball by Blue Crabs catcher Ryan Wiggins.
Snyder responded in the fourth frame with a two-run homer, his 22nd of the season, off of Ducks
starter Tyler Levine to put the Blue Crabs up 2-1.
Long Island rallied in the bottom of the sixth with three runs off of Blue Crabs starter Brian Grening. A Elmer Reyes two-run double and a Burg sacrifice fly accounted for the scoring during that span.
Levine did not factor into the decision but pitched 4 1/3 innings, allowing just two runs on two hits with one strikeout. Rob Rogers picked up the win for the Ducks, going an inning and a third, giving up just
one hit. Diaz got the save after pitching a scoreless ninth.
Grening suffered the loss, giving up four runs, three earned on eight hits with two walks and one strikeout in 5 1/3 innings of work.