(Waldorf, MD., Jul. 4, 2018) – The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (25-37) dropped the third game in the series against the Somerset Patriots (35-27) 6-3, with the Patriots clinching the First-Half Liberty Division Championship on the day.
The Blue Crabs got on the board first on the night, scoring in the first for the second consecutive day. Ryan Strausborger started the game the same as last night, doubling as the leadoff hitter for Southern Maryland. A single from Edwin Garcia moved him up to third, setting up a groundball from Teodoro Martinez that allowed Strausborger to score the first run of the night.
Craig Stem allowed just two hits on the mound for the Blue Crabs through three innings, starting strong in just his second start of the season. The Patriots got some offense going in the fourth, tying the game in the inning. Danny Dorn singled with one out in the inning, moving into scoring position on a walk to Kyle Roller. Aaron Dudley followed that with a double, easily bringing home Dorn to even the score at 1-1.
The Blue Crabs offense bounced back with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning. Croy Vaughn grabbed the lead back for the team with a one-out solo homerun, his team-high 11th of the season. Two batters later, Austin Green extended the inning with a double to get himself in scoring position. A single from Angelys Nina allowed him to come around from second, putting Southern Maryland ahead 3-1.
After a scoreless fifth inning, Somerset got one back in the top of the sixth on a solo homerun from Kyle Roller. Roller’s team-high seventh long ball of the season brought the Patriots within one, as reliever Vince Molesky (2-1) continued to shut down the Blue Crabs offense. Molesky came on in relief of starter Cory Riordan after the fourth inning, and worked three scoreless frames for Somerset.
The Patriots took their first lead of the night in the top of the seventh, rallying for four runs off reliever Sam Runion (0-3). Runion, who has been dominant out of the bullpen all season, walked two of the first three batters in the inning to put a pair on. A groundout moved the runners up, allowing both to score on a two-out single from Dorn. After a walk to Roller, Dudley scored both runners on base with a triple, extending the lead out to 6-3.
Southern Maryland wasn’t done yet, as they cut in to the lead with a run in the bottom of the eighth. Frank Martinez was hit by a pitch from Chase Huchingson, allowing him to reach base where he was replaced by pinch-runner Francisco Rosario. Two batters later, Cory Vaughn was hit by another pitch, putting two on with two out in the inning. A wild pitch allowed both to move up a base, before two pitches later another wild pitch brought Rosario in from third.
Somerset turned the two-run lead over to their closer Ryan Kelly (S,10) in the bottom of the ninth. The reliever worked a 1-2-3 inning for the Patriots, closing the door on the 6-4 victory in the third game of the series.
The Blue Crabs return to action Thursday, July 5th for the final game in the series against the Patriots. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 P.M. on Thursday at Regency Furniture Stadium.
For more information on the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, or to reserve your seat today for any of the Blue Crabs upcoming home games, please visit our website at somdbluecrabs.com or call us at 301-638-9788.