The Hickory Crawdads broke out the long ball Monday night to complete their four-game sweep of the Greenville Drive. Jairo Beras, Kellin Deglan, and Lewis Brinson all went yard to lead the 'Dads to a 10-3 win at L.P. Frans Stadium.
The victory makes the 'Dads the first team in the South Atlantic League to reach the 10-win plateau in the second half of the South Atlantic League season with a 10-2 record. The win also has some historical significance for the franchise as it moves the Crawdads (51-30 overall) all-time record to 1,497-1,497, marking the first time the team has reached the .500 mark since they were 5-5 ten games into their inaugural season way back in 1993. The Crawdads have never been over .500 in their 22-year existence.
The 'Dads bats got things rolling early as leadoff hitter Evan Van Hoosier doubled to right-center field in the first inning. He scored on a bunt single by Michael De Leon and an ensuing throwing error by Greenville second baseman Wendell Rijo for a 1-0 lead.
The Drive () responded by scoring a pair of runs without the benefit of a base hit in the top of the second. An error by De Leon and four consecutive walks forced in two runs and gave Greenville a short-lived 2-1 lead. The Crawdads tied it up in the bottom of the second on a double by Ronald Guzman, a single by Beras and a sacrifice fly by Janluis Castro.
The Drive regained the lead 3-2 in the top of the third, thanks to a two-out double by Wendall Rijo followed up by a run-scoring single by Manuel Margot. But the 'Dads jumped on top for good with four runs in the bottom of the third. Brinson brought home the first run when Joe Jackson scored on his infield single. Beras had the decisive blow when he lined a two-out, three-run homer to right-center field that gave the Crawdads a 6-3 lead.
The Crawdads put the game out of reach, thanks to Deglan's solo home run in the fifth and Brinson solo blast in the seventh. Beras finished the night going 3-4 with his third home run of the year, a double, and three RBI; Brinson went 2-4 with his eighth long ball of the year and two RBI; Deglan ended the game 1-4 with his 11th home run of the year; Van Hoosier was 2-5 with a double and a run scored; De Leon was 2-5 with a double; Nomar Mazara was 2-5 with a double and a run scored. The Crawdads made 14 hits.
Reliever Felix Carvallo (3-2) earned the win in relief. He tossed three scoreless innings. The Crawdads head to West Virginia for the first time this year to start a three-game series against the Power. First pitch on Tuesday is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Crawdads on the Road: The 'Dads will be on the road over the next three days playing the Northern Division rival West Virginia Power. Make sure to listen in to all the road action online! INFO
Fourth of July at L.P. Frans Stadium: The Crawdads will be back at home for Independence Day this Friday! Limited tickets are still available! TICKETS
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Photo Courtesy: Lewis Brinson, Hickory Crawdads