Left fielder Carlos Vidal broke a scoreless tie in the sixth with a solo homer before the Greenville Drive rallied to score the final four runs of the ballgame to take Game One of the South Atlantic League Division Series, 4-1, on Wednesday night at Joe Riley Park in front of 2,447 fans.
RiverDogs ace Freicer Perez was superb, logging six scoreless innings and matching a career-high with nine punch outs while allowing four hits in a no-decision. Charleston’s bullpen which logged a league-best 1.98 ERA in the regular season gave up four runs over the final three innings in the first of the best-of-three series deciding the Southern Division.
After Vidal gave the RiverDogs lead in the sixth, it was erased quickly as Greenville grabbed a 2-1 lead in the seventh. Third baseman Bobby Dalbec was hit by a pitch to start the frame then left fielder Pedro Castellanos walked to put runners on first and second. First baseman Tucker Tubbs tied the game with an RBI single then center fielder Jagger Rusconi gave the Drive the lead with an RBI base knock.
Catcher Roldani Baldwin homered in the eighth to make it 3-1 then Tubbs capped the scoring with a solo blast to start the ninth.
Garrett Mundell (0-1) took the loss after surrendering the two go-ahead runs for the Drive in the seventh. Chase Hodson and Braden Bristo both gave up homers in their combined 2 2/3 innings of work.
Drive starter Darwinzon Hernandez (1-0) went seven innings, allowing just two hits including the solo shot from Vidal while striking out six.
Vidal’s homer marked just his second of the season after launching one long ball in 69 regular season games.
Fans received “White Out” playoff t-shirts at the gates to celebrate “Back to the Playoffs” presented by Benefitfocus. Also included was a Budweiser Thirsty Wednesday featuring dollar beers in the Ashley View Pub.
The RiverDogs need a win to keep their season alive against Greenville starting Friday evening at 7:05 from Fluor Field. Charleston will send right-hander Rony Garcia (2-3, 2.24) to face Greenville’s righty Bryan Mata (5-6, 3.74). The game can be tuned into on “The Big Talker” WTMA 1250 AM and online with streaming audio via riverdogs.com and the RiverDogs’ TuneIn Radio app station.