As a Wednesday night crowd of 2,346 fans exited Lake Olmstead Stadium, several of them down the first base line stopped just behind the Augusta GreenJackets dugout to give the home team a standing ovation.
After a 5-0 win over the Charleston RiverDogs, the GreenJackets deserved the extra applause.
"It's a nice recognition," GreenJackets manager Andy Skeels said. "It's certainly encouraging to see the fans are interested in what we're doing. We've had good support."
The GreenJackets' eighth win in nine games kept them in first place in the South Atlantic League's Southern Division and lifted the team to a season-high 21 games above .500.
The mood in the locker room after the game was that of a team simply having fun.
"It seems like everybody's having a good time, and we're learning how to play as a team," outfielder Shane Jordan said. "We're more cohesive than we were before, and now we're learning how to win."
It was Jordan's diving catch in center field that ended the game, which the home team led from the second inning to the finish.
Thomas Neal extended his hit streak to 11 games with a 2-for-4 night, while starter Daryl Maday kept a streak of his own alive. He threw six scoreless innings for the win and hasn't given up a run in his past 25 innings.
"I try not to think about that," he said. "I just try to give my team a chance to win. It's a long season, and right now I'm just out there plugging away."
Maday left the game with a 3-0 lead, and the bullpen took care of the rest.
The GreenJackets owned a 4-0 lead with one out in the bottom of the eighth, but the fireworks were just starting. Charleston reliever Gabe Medina gave up a double to Neal, then was called for a balk on back-to-back pitches that allowed Neal to score. Medina's response to the calls got him ejected immediately, and RiverDogs manager Torre Tyson was tossed after his complaint escalated to a heated face-to-face argument with both umpires.
NOTES: GreenJackets ace Madison Bumgarner (8-2), was originally scheduled to start today's game, but he'll be pushed back to Saturday to make room for newcomer Gib Hobson, who will make his first Single-A start after beginning the season with Salem-Keizer.
Outfielder Francisco Peguero was sent down to Salem-Keizer on Wednesday and was replaced by Taylor Gresswell, of the Arizona League Giants.
Catcher Matt Klimas was placed on the disabled list Wednesday with an injured right hamstring.
Reach Billy Byler at (706) 823-3216 or firstname.lastname@example.org.