Jackets seem a bit fatigued

The Augusta GreenJackets donned commemorative camouflage jerseys Friday for Military Appreciation Night at Lake Olmstead Stadium.

It seemed appropriate attire for the GreenJackets, who have looked a bit fatigued lately.

Lexington starter Casey Hudspeth pitched seven strong innings, and Augusta lost its third game in a row, 5-2, to the Legends in the series opener Friday night.

Approaching the 80-game mark and perhaps showing the effects of Augusta's summer heat, the GreenJackets lost three home games in a row for the first time since early May.

Starter Clayton Tanner struggled for the second consecutive start.

The 19-year-old lefty, who gave up a career-high six runs in his previous outing, allowed four runs and 10 hits in just four innings.

Most of that damage came from the top of Lexington's order. The Nos. 1 through 4 hitters collected seven of the first 10 hits and nine of 14 overall.

Brandon Caipen had three hits, and Eric Taylor, Koby Clemens (Roger Clemens' son) and Max Sapp each had two. All four singled in Lexington's three-run third inning.

Hudspeth, meanwhile, went deep into the game on another muggy night. Coming off his shortest start of the year (2w innings), Hudspeth allowed one run - none earned - in seven innings for the win.

The GreenJackets (55-24, 5-4 second half) managed 11 hits but hit into several double plays and failed to score in a couple of good situations.

Ryan Rohlinger extended his hitting streak to 10 with three hits, and Matt Weston, Juan Jean and James Simmons had two.

Lexington (34-45, 3-6), of the Northern Division, snapped a four-game losing streak.

Tanner got off to a rocky start, allowing hits to three of the first four Lexington batters. Sapp's RBI double made it 1-0.

After Clemens picked up a RBI in the third, Tanner walked in a run and Greg Buchanan ripped a RBI single up the middle to make it 4-0.

Reliever Craig Whitaker made his first appearance for the GreenJackets this season by starting the fifth, and he gave up triples to Jimmy Van Ostrand and John Florentino to make it 5-0.

The GreenJackets got on the board in the sixth.

After Tyler Graham reached on an error. Rohlinger's RBI single made it 5-1. Augusta loaded the bases with one out but Henry Gutierrez grounded into a double play.

Jean drove in a ninth-inning run off reliever Kyle DeYoung.

NOTES: Augusta manager Roberto Kelly, who missed the four-game series against West Virginia because of personal reasons, returned to the dugout Friday.

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

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