Wednesday, May 29 - GreenJackets 2, Crawdads 1
It wasn't pretty, and what has ailed the GreenJackets over the past several games continued, but they did manage to squeak out a win to take the series over the Crawdads.
Second baseman Trevor Brown provided the go-ahead RBI single in the sixth that proved to be the winning run. Catcher Eric Sim reached on a hit-by-pitch, advanced on a bunt and scored by Brown. It's the type of manufactured baseball Mike Goff is trying to instill, but it's been a serious work in progress lately.
Brown went 2 for 4 with the RBI and a walk. Joe Rapp picked up a double. Otherwise, there wasn't much to say about the Augusta lineup. The GreenJackets stranded 12 and went 2 for 13 with runners in scoring position. But that stat levels out over time if the team's hitters are capable at this classification.
Starter Joe Biagini had some of his best stuff this season on his 23rd birthday, striking out a season-high nine and inducing a season-high 13 swinging strikes over 6.2 innings. He flashed some of the best changeups I've seen from him, and he also implemented the curveball well in the later innings.
What stood out to me most was Biagini bearing down in the sixth inning. With the tying run on third and one out, he struck out Luis Marte and Nick Urbanus back-to-back to preserve the tie. The GreenJackets would go on to score the go-ahead run the next half inning.
Biagini said he went changeup early to complement the fastball, and he noticed it was getting a healthy dose of whiffs. He changed things up with the curveball late to give Crawdads batters multiple looks, which seems to be the answer to Hickory's bats when executed properly.
Behind Biagini, Derek Law struck out two over a scoreless eighth, showing some of his best heat this season. Tyler Mizenko struck out the side in the ninth. Goff said it was the best he's seen from Mizenko in his past five outings.
Hickory starter C.J. Edwards showed some pretty impressive stuff, but he also showed why he isn't going past five innings very often. Edwards struck out seven and induced 12 swinging strikes in only 3.2 innings, but he walked four and struggled hitting spots at times.
The thin right-hander has a serious back-leg bend and spine tilt, which leads to struggles at staying on top of the ball and commanding it well. He repeats his delivery well and gets the most out of his arm without a lot of effort, but he doesn't have a strong follow-through and loses it up in the zone at times. His fastball runs low-90s with the occasional 95, while he flashed a solid curveball and changeup that are pretty equal in development. It's a matter of finding command within his delivery.
Notable Augusta lines:
Joe Biagini: 6.2 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K, 13 swinging strikes
Derek Law: 1 IP, 2 K
Tyler Mizenko: 1 IP, 3 K
Trevor Brown: 2-4, RBI, BB
Joe Rapp: 1-4, 2B
Notable Hickory lines:
C.J. Edwards: 3.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 7 K, 12 swinging strikes
David Lyon: 2-3, 2B
Lewis Brinson: 2-4
Nick Urbanus: 1-4, RBI