(Waldorf, MD., Sep. 6, 2018) – The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs (19-32) dropped the series finale against the Sugar Land Skeeters (37-17) 12-9, giving Sugar Land the series sweep.
The first inning brought an offensive explosion from both sides, as each team started the scoring early on the night. Barrett Barnes led off the game with a walk, coming home two batters later on a two-run homerun from Derek Norris, his second of the season. Three straight singles followed, as Albert Cordero’s hit brought home Juan Silverio. Daniel Robertson then launched his first homerun of the season, a three-run shot that put the Skeeters ahead 6-0.
The Blue Crabs would immediately respond, putting up a seven-run frame to take the lead. Ryan Strausborger got everything going with a solo homerun, his third long ball in the last six games. Edwin Garcia then singled, moving around two batters later on a double from Jon Griffin. Frank Martinez would add a single to score Garcia, with a double from Cory Vaughn bringing home both Griffin and Martinez. A single from Craig Maddox brought home Vaughn, before a triple from Francisco Rosario scored Maddox to tie the game. Strausborger’s second hit of the inning, a single, brought home Rosario to make the score 7-6.
Pitching settled down for a few after that, as Daryl Thompson and Sugar Land reliever Alex Wimmers both worked scoreless innings in the second and third. The Skeeters tied things up in the fourth, with the offense beginning on a one-out triple from Alvaro Rondon. After Thompson got popup for the second out, a double from Anthony Giansanti scored Rondon to even the game at 7-7.
Southern Maryland would retake the lead in the fifth, scoring one of their own. Rodriguez led off the frame with a single, moving to second a groundout from Martinez two batters later. Angelys Nina came through with a two-out single, scoring Rodriguez to retake the lead. The Skeeters would respond once again though, as Norris launched his second homerun of the game to even things back up in the top of the sixth at 8-8.
The back-and-forth scoring continued in the seventh, as the Blue Crabs retook the lead. After a strikeout started the frame, an infield single from Martinez got the go-ahead run on base. Nina followed that with a double to deep center field, just getting over the center fielder’s head to score Martinez all the way from first and take a one-run lead.
A scoreless eighth ensued, with Southern Maryland turning the narrow lead over to their closer Cody Eppley. Three straight singles started the inning, loading the bases with nobody out. Eppley got a popup for the first out in the inning, before a double from Cordero scored two runs to put the Sugar Land on top. A wild pitch added another to the total, before an error allowed Cordero to make the score 12-9 before the inning would end.
The three-run lead was turned over to Felipe Paulino (S,32) in the bottom of the ninth. Paulino started his night with a strikeout, before Griffin singled for the first hit of the inning. A groundout to first moved Griffin to second, before Nina’s third hit of the night extended the game for Vaughn as the tying run. Vaughn battled Paulino for nine pitches before drawing a walk to load the bases. Maddox wouldn’t go down easy either, as it took Paulino eight pitches to finally get a groundball and finish off the 12-9 win. The save was Paulino’s 32ndof the season, tying the Sugar Land single-season record for saves.
The Blue Crabs return to action Friday, September 7th for the series opener against the Lancaster Barnstormers. First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 P.M. on Friday at Clipper Magazine 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.