RiverDogs right-hander Freicer Perez struck out eight across 5 2/3 innings as Charleston got back to .500 on the season with a 4-1 victory over the West Virginia Power on Monday evening at Appalachian Power Park. Brandon Wagner slugged his first home run of the season to add insurance as the RiverDogs took a two games to one series lead.
Perez (1-2, 5.20) was touched up in just one frame, that being in the bottom half of inning number two. Second baseman Trae Arbet got hit by a pitch before designated hitter Carlos Munoz hit a deep single to move Arbet to third. Left fielder Ty Moore put the Power up 1-0 with a sacrifice fly to left.
The RiverDogs (19-19) were held without a hit until they took the lead in the fourth. Second baseman Hoy Jun Park singled to start the inning and right fielder Blake Rutherford stroked a base hit to put runners at the corners with nobody out. Left fielder Isiah Gilliam extended his hit streak to 12 games with an RBI single that scored Park. First baseman Brandon Wagner got drilled in the knee and loaded the bases. Charleston took a 2-1 lead after designated hitter Carlos Vidal hit a roller back to the pitcher Geoff Hartlieb (1-1, 1.53) and Hartlieb sailed a throw wide of the catcher, Brent Gibbs, allowing Rutherford to score from third. The bases remained loaded and catcher Eduardo Navas singled to right scoring Gilliam to make it 3-1.
Perez got himself out of a few jams as his start continued. The Power (17-20) had an opportunity in the third and fourth after getting the lead off man on, but Perez used his strikeout stuff to prevent West Virginia from adding.
The RiverDogs got some insurance off the bat of Wagner in the top of the ninth. The Hopewell, NJ native got an inside fastball that he crushed to the corner in right field that sailed out of the park to make it 4-1.
Perez got his first win of the season as he tossed 5.2 innings and struck out a season high eight batters. Trevor Lane came in for relief in the sixth with the bases loaded and got the RiverDogs out of a jam by striking out center fielder Sandy Santos. Lane pitched 2.1 innings with out surrendering a hit and striking out two. Hartlieb took the loss after he surrendered three runs in the fourth inning. Garrett Mundell came in the ninth to close things out and he got his second save of the season.
The RiverDogs will wrap up the series on Tuesday morning at Appalachian Power Park with the first pitch at 10:35am. Right-hander Jio Orozco (1-2, 6.08) will toe the rubber for Charleston and the Power will send lefty Oddy Nunez (0-3, 3.65). The game will be broadcast exclusively online streaming at riverdogs.com and the TuneIn Radio app under the "Charleston RiverDogs" station.