(Waldorf, MD, September 14, 2021) Three runs in the fourth inning and two in the fifth inning led an improbable 6-4 come from behind victory for the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs over the Long Island Ducks Tuesday night.
Starting pitcher Daryl Thompson (W, 12-3) found his form after an unnatural first inning, tossing eight strong innings. Center fielder Zach Collier continues to be a force at the plate, going 2-2 with two RBI’s and a walk. Collier now leads the Blue Crabs in batting average at .327.
Long Island showed why they have been the team to beat in the North Division this summer by plating four first-inning runs off of 2019 Atlantic League Pitcher of the Year. RBI’s came from designated hitter Deibinson Romero, first baseman Chris Shaw, and catcher Hector Sanchez.
Slowly, the Crabs chipped away at the deficit. Right fielder David Harris started the second inning with a lead-off triple, which allowed Collier to hit him in on a sacrifice fly making it a 4-1 contest.
Two innings later, Southern Maryland’s Joe DeLuca entered the left-handed batter’s box with the bases loaded and two outs. DeLuca laced one-off of Ducks starter Anderson DeLeon (L, 5-5) down the right-field line that scored two and turned the night into a one-run ballgame. A wild pitch from relief pitcher Julio “Ricky” Eusebio to shortstop Michael Baca allowed Collier to score from third and tie the game at four.
Eusebio was hit around again the next inning, giving up the lead and more. Harris ripped a double off the “Mini-Monster” in left field, scoring second baseman Rubi Silva from first base to land Southern Maryland their first lead of the night at 5-4. Collier then singled in Harris for some insurance that moved the scoreboard at 6-4, Crabs.
The six runs was enough for Daryl Thompson to find his groove, and cruise for seven shutout innings after his nightmare first inning. Closer Mat Latos (S, 20) locked it down in the ninth inning, picking up his 20th save on the year and snatching his ball club at a 6-4 victory.