Claudio Custodio (3-4, RBI) led the Charleston Riverdogs offense to a 4-2 victory over the West Virginia Power in South Atlantic League play Tuesday night at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Stadium in front of 2,763 fans. The win moves the RiverDogs (9-9) back to .500 on the season and into a tie for fourth place in the Southern Division while the Power (8-11) stay put in sixth place in the Northern Division.
The RiverDogs jumped ahead early in the bottom half of the first inning. Outfielder Jake Cave (2-5) doubled in his first career at bat with the RiverDogs and later moved to third on a single by Cito Culver (2-4). Cave then scored the first run of the game on a throwing error by the pitcher.
Back-to-back Charleston errors gave the Power runners on first and second with no outs in the top of the third inning. They capitalized on the RiverDogs mistakes with a two RBI triple by Dilson Herrera that scored Ashley Ponce and Barrett Barnes (2-3) and put West Virginia ahead 2-1.
The RiverDogs threatened in the bottom of the fourth inning. With runners on first and second West Virginia left fielder Raul Fortunato threw out Yeicock Calderon at the plate and robbed Kelvin DeLeon of an RBI. Later, with the bases loaded Claudio Custodio flew out to right field to end the inning.
West Virginia starting pitcher John Kuchno was relieved in the fourth inning by Lance Breedlove (1-2). In four innings of work Kuchno allowed one run on five hits, walked three batters, and struck out four, but was not a factor in the decision.
Charleston regained the lead in the bottom of the sixth inning. Following a DeLeon single and a Taylor Dugas double, Custodio hit a single to left field that scored DeLeon and tied the game at 2-2. Dugas then scored the RiverDogs go ahead run on a double by Cave.
Breedlove was relieved during the inning by Bryton Trepagnier. In one and one third of an inning, Breedlove allowed two runs on four hits and picked up the loss.
In the top of the seventh inning, Dietrich Enns replaced RiverDogs starting pitcher Gabe Encinas (3-0) on the mound. Encinas pitched six innings, allowed two runs (both unearned) on four hits and earned his third win of the season. Enns pitched two scoreless innings, allowed just one hit, and struck out three to keep his perfect ERA in tact.
A dropped pop fly in the bottom of the seventh inning by Power third baseman Eric Wood allowed Dante Bichette Jr. to score the fourth RiverDogs' run of the night.
Charles Short struck out the side in a scoreless ninth inning and picked up his first save of the season.
BALLPARK FUN: It was National Parks Night where fans helped celebrate National Parks Week. Youngsters in attendance also got a chance to become Junior Park Rangers.
COMING UP: The second game of this three-game series against the West Virginia Power is Wednesday morning at 11:05. RHP Vicente Campos (0-0, 5.00 ERA) will be on the mound for Charleston and will face RHP Tyler Glasnow (0-0, 1.54 ERA). Students from around the Lowcountry will be in attendance for Education Day.