Kannapolis is blanked by Augusta

The Augusta GreenJackets went into Tuesday's series finale against Kannapolis with the best ERA in the South Atlantic League, by far.

 

Thanks to Kevin Pucetas and Robert Grace, it's now even better.

Pucetas, out of Broome High in Spartanburg, S.C., and Grace combined on a four-hit shutout in Augusta's 9-0 win over the Intimidators at Lake Olmstead Stadium.

It was the GreenJackets' league-leading eighth shutout of the season and lowered the team's ERA through 20 games from 1.78 to 1.69.

Augusta (17-3), which is off today before a four-game home set with Greenville starting Thursday, allowed just one unearned run the last three games of the series to Kannapolis (8-11).

Pucetas (2-0) lowered his ERA to 0.47 by allowing one hit in six shutout innings, and Grace earned his second save with three scoreless innings.

Brett Pill went 2-for-4 with three RBI, and Mike McBryde doubled twice and drove in two as the GreenJackets broke a 1-0 game open with eight runs in the last four innings.

Brian Bocock stole four bases - one shy of the SAL single-game record - and leads the minor leagues with 18 stolen bases.

Augusta now has outscored its opponents 108-38 and has stolen a league-best 51 bases.

Kannapolis starter Jose Zazueta walked Bocock to lead off the game, and it cost him the loss.

Bocock stole his way to third base, and Bobby Felmy's flyout to left scored the run for a 1-0 lead.

Zazueta carried a no-hitter into the fifth inning, when McBryde doubled, but got no run support to fall to 1-2.

The GreenJackets, sparked again by Bocock, scored four in the sixth off reliever Kanekoa Texeira, who failed to record an out.

Bocock walked and stole second and third bases again, then scored on Ryan Rohlinger's slap single to right.

Felmy followed with a broken-bat single, and Pill delivered two runs with a deep double to center. Texeira was pulled for Noe Rodriguez, who gave up Joey Dyche's RBI single.

In the seventh, Rohlinger walked and scored on Pill's seeing-eye hit off Clevelan Santeliz to make it 6-0.

Mike McBryde added a two-RBI double in the eighth and scored on a wild pitch to make it 9-0.

The Intimidators, who won the first game of the series Saturday night, now have lost six of their past seven.

Reach Steve Sanders at (706) 823-3216 or steven.l.sanders@augustachronicle.com.

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