Sunday, August 4 - Augusta 6, Charleston 5
If you're going to end a nine-game homestand in seven days, you might as well do it in an interesting fashion.
Augusta threw away a three-run lead in the top of the ninth on three wild pitches by two different pitchers, and the GreenJackets ended up winning in the bottom of the ninth on an error.
Looking at the positives, Augusta starter Matt Lujan was again very solid, allowing one run on four hits in 6.2 innings. He struck out eight and induced 13 swinging strikes on a solid cutter and changeup combination. He also kept the ball on the ground - 11 ground balls - and avoided hard contact - one line drive.
Mitch Delfino homered for the second consecutive day, hitting a blast to left-center for his 10th of the season. He was on top of the ball all four plate appearances, going deep, singling to right and walking twice. He's seeing the ball very well right now and is showing the type of bat he can provide when hot.
Shawn Payne continues to be a threat every time up, going 2 for 4 with a double, RBI and walk. He reached on a single in the ninth, advanced to second on a bunt, stole third and scored the winning run when third baseman Ty Afenir failed to catch the ball, letting it trickle into left field.
The GreenJackets bullpen nearly imploded in the ninth. After getting two consecutive outs and coming within one of finishing the game, Jake Dunnington gave up a double and walk, prompting a pitching change so lefty Steven Okert could face lefty Greg Bird. Okert walked Bird on four pitches to load the bases.
With Ian Gardeck in for the third consecutive day, he threw two wild pitches on two pitches that scored two runs. He then walked a batter while the tying run was 90 feet away.
Edward Concepcion walked the next batter to load the bases again. With Ericson Leonora batting, Concepcion threw a wild pitch that scored the tying run. Charleston then left the go-ahead run on third with a groundout by Leonora.
It was a trying end to an otherwise very successful homestand for the GreenJackets, who have won eight straight if counting a suspended game that was finished Thursday. They swept Charleston six straight games in four days after taking two of three from Rome to begin the week.
Notable Augusta lines:
Matt Lujan: 6.2 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 8 K, 13 swinging strikes, 11 ground balls, 2 fly balls, 1 line drive
Mitch Delfino: 2-2, HR, RBI, 2 BB
Shawn Payne: 2-4, 2B, RBI, BB
Andrew Cain: 1-4, 2B, RBI
Joey Rapp: 1-4, RBI
Notable Charleston lines:
Evan Rutckyj: 5 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 5 BB, 2 K
Ericson Leonora: 2-5, 2 RBI
Jake Cave: 2-4, 2 2B, BB
Greg Bird: 1-3, 2B, 2 BB
Angelo Gumbs: 1-4, 2B, BB