As Augusta’s Luis Ysla was told he reached the necessary number of innings, he hugged pitching coach Steve Kline and walked down the dugout steps for the final time this season.
Ysla threw three scoreless innings to earn a notable accomplishment as the GreenJackets ended the season with a 2-0 win over the Charleston RiverDogs on Monday at Lake Olmstead Stadium.
With the three innings, Ysla lowered his ERA to 2.45 and won the South Atlantic League ERA title. He passed Greensboro’s Domingo German, who ended the year at 2.48.
“I’ve never felt like that before,” Ysla said through an interpreter. “To be able to gain that title is something that’s an achievement. I feel very blessed.”
Augusta manager Mike Goff said Ysla began the year insecure as he experienced his first full professional season. He grew as a person and pitcher over 121 innings and was named the SAL Left-handed Pitcher of the Year.
“He’s grown up a lot, he’s matured a lot,” Goff said. “He’s turning into a pitcher now, which is good to see. We’re glad to see him get the title. The kid deserves it.”
Ysla’s achievement highlighted a strong day on the mound for the GreenJackets. Carlos Diaz threw four perfect innings with four strikeouts in relief, and Michael Connolly and Nick Jones each threw a scoreless inning.
Augusta (62-76) retired 22 Charleston batters in a row at one point. The RiverDogs (71-69) only had three hits in the game.
Jeremy Sy hit his 13th home run of the season in the second inning to break a scoreless tie. Craig Massoni doubled home the other run in the third.
The GreenJackets totaled five hits and one walk. Chris Lofton and Rando Moreno each doubled.
RiverDogs starter Gabe Encinas allowed two runs on five hits in 32/3 innings, striking out five. Relievers Conor Mullee and Chad Taylor combined for 41/3 hitless innings with one walk and two strikeouts.
The final game of the season was the shortest nine-inning contest for Augusta at 1 hour, 54 minutes.