The Hickory Crawdads finally broke out of their offensive slump and defeated the Delmarva Shorebirds 6-2 Saturday night at L..P Frans Stadium. The 'Dads pounded out 15 hits, including two home runs, en route to snapping their six-game losing streak in front of a season-best crowd of 5,263.
The win leaves Hickory (71-54 overall; 30-26, second half of the South Atlantic League season) six games behind first-place Hagerstown in the SAL's Northern Division. They're 6 1/2 games behind Greensboro in the wildcard race.
Hagerstown defeated Lakewood 4-2 Saturday night; Kannapolis blanked Greensboro, 6-0.
Five different Crawdad batters finished with a multi-hit games, led by Ronald Guzman who went 4-5 with his sixth home run of the year, a double, two RBI, and two runs scored. Kevin Torres (3-4, 2B, R) and Nick Urbanus (3-4) each posted three-hit games; Jairo Beras (2-4, HR, RBI, run scored), and Michael De Leon (2-5, run scored) collected two hits apiece.
And Tyler Smith (7-4), who tossed seven shutout innings and scattered five hits, had his best effort of the season. Smith also had five strikeouts with no walks.
Hickory scored a run in the second inning, two runs in the third, and single runs in the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings. Hickory took a 1-0 lead with a little help from the Shorebirds.
Consecutive singles from Torres and Urbanus were followed by a fielding error by Delmarva All-Star third baseman Drew Dosch, allowing Torres to score.
A sacrifice fly by Joe Jackson and a run-scoring single by Beras gave Hickory a 3-0 lead. The lead swelled to 5-0 following solo home runs by Beras and Guzman in the fifth and sixth innings respectively; Guzman came through again in the eighth with an RBI single.
The Shorebirds (62-63; 24-32) broke the shutout with a pair of runs in the top of the ninth. But Crawdads closer Jose Valdespina shut the door with a game-ending double play, earning his fifth save of the year.
Smith earned the win with his shutout performance. Delmarva starter Bennett Parry (1-2) took the loss after allowing three runs, two earned, on eight hits, with two walks, and three strikeouts over four innings.
The Crawdads will try to earn a four-game split against the Shorebirds Sunday at 5:00 p.m.
Crawdads @ Home: The Crawdads wrap up their home stand on Sunday with Kids Run the Show/Church Bulletin Sunday! Don't miss out!
Boy Scout Night: Limited space is still available for the Crawdads LAST Boy Scout Night on Friday, August 22nd! Bring your Boy Scout troop out for a night of baseball followed by a post-game movie and camping under the stars on the field of L.P. Frans Stadium! For more information or to reserve your spot, email Crawdads Group Sales Associate Zach Miller, or call (828) 322-3000!
All-Star Jersey Auction: The Crawdads are auctioning off the authentic, game worn jerseys from this year's South Atlantic League All-Star Game in Hickory! Jerseys from both the Northern and Southern Division players and coaches are up for bid now on the 'Dads online auction page!
Stay Connected: Make sure to stay connected with the Crawdads by visiting the 'Dads website at www.hickorycrawdads.com, or by following us on Facebook and Twitter!
Photo Courtesy: Kevin Torres, Hickory Crawdads