Shortstop Wilkerman Garcia blasted a fourth-inning grand slam before Dermis Garcia and Steven Sensley belted the next two pitches out for home runs, but the offensive well dried up as the RiverDogs couldn’t muster anything further in a 10-9 walk-off loss in 10 innings to the Drive on Friday night in Fluor Field.
Wilkerman Garcia crushed a 2-1 fastball to right field for his fifth of the season and his third at Fluor Field this year before Dermis Garcia deposited a line drive on top of the mini monster in left on the very next pitch for his third of the year. Sensley’s team-leading eighth blast was a mammoth shot to right as Julio Mosquera’s side saw their three-game winning streak snapped after a sweep in Columbia on the first-leg of the road trip.
The eight-run fourth was the biggest offensive outburst of the season for the RiverDogs (29-30). It stretched Charleston out to a 9-1 advantage before the Drive (20-39) rallied for their second walk-off win in four games against their Yankees rivals this year.
Austin DeCarr suffered the loss for Charleston. After the RiverDogs couldn’t get on the board for the sixth consecutive inning despite a free runner starting on second base, the Drive bunted over first baseman Michael Osinski in the bottom half before he eventually scored on a 3-0 wild pitch to Kervin Suarez in the 10th.
Alexander Vargas gave up five runs in relief in a no-decision effort. The Dominican righty allowed two inherited runners to score on consecutive doubles to the first two batters he faced in the fifth before yielding a sixth inning, leadoff blast to catcher Charlie Madden, who also drove in the game-tying run in the seventh with a two-out single as part of a 3 RBI night. Vargas has now allowed 19 earned runs in three outings away from The Joe with just one all season in three starts at the friendly confines.
Miguel Yajure made his South Atlantic League debut, leaving after giving up back-to-back singles in the fifth and exiting with 4.0-plus innings of work in a no-decision.
Hildemaro Requena gave up all nine Charleston runs in his first time facing the RiverDogs since shutting them down in game three of the South Atlantic League playoffs in a 5-0 win last September. Because of our four Greenville errors, all nine went unearned. Southpaw Angel Padron shut down the Dogs by fanning seven in four nearly perfect innings of relief.
The loss marked the 29th one-run game played by the Holy City this season and the 41st in 59 games decided by two runs or fewer.
Eight of Charleston’s five hits came in the fourth inning. Only designated hitter Leonardo Molina had a multi-hit night.
The RiverDogs continue the series with the Drive on Saturday night at Fluor Field. The RiverDogs will throw righty Rony Garcia (2-2, 3.64) to face Greenville right-hander Denyi Reyes (4-3, 2.23) with the first pitch at 6:05 p.m. Saturday’s contest will be broadcast on 1250 WTMA in the tri-county area, with audio available at riverdogs.com and the RiverDogs TuneIn radio station. “Saturday Dog Talk” pregame coverage starts at 5:30.