CHARLESTON, S.C. – For the second straight night, the Kannapolis pitching staff proved to be too much for RiverDogs hitters to handle, as Charleston fell by a final score of 5-2 in a sloppy Tuesday night contest with 2,503 in attendance at Joe Riley Park.
Roansy Contreras (2-1, 3.32) took the mound for the RiverDogs (8-11) Tuesday night, and was able to work just 4.2 innings, needing 91 pitches and allowing four runs on four hits. The second inning ultimately did him in, when three singles and an ill-timed defensive error aided Kannapolis in putting three early tallies up on the scoreboard.
Intimidators (7-10) starter Taylor Varnell (2-1, 1.96) kept the Dogs off balance all night long, save for the bottom of the fourth inning when a handful of well-placed balls in play led to Charleston’s only two runs of the evening.
After cruising through Charleston’s order the first time through, allowing just one hit to Junior Soto, a one-out bloop single to right by Wilkerman Garcia, followed by an infield single by Josh Stowers set up a golden opportunity for catcher Josh Breaux in the fourth. He popped out to second, but a clutch single by Nelson Gomez brought both runners home to bring the Dogs back within one. Something to keep an eye on, Stowers was removed from the game following a play at the plate in which he scored Charleston’s second run. Kyle Gray dashed out to right field in the top of the fifth to take his place defensively for just his second appearance in the outfield this season.
Varnell was able to bounce back after the shaky frame, punctuating his night with two more perfect innings. All told, he gave up those two runs on four hits, striking out six. He did not issue a walk.
After being held to just two runs Tuesday night, the RiverDogs have been able to muster just six runs over their last 26 offensive innings, helping contribute to a 2-5 record in their last seven contests. Also lost in the contest was outfielder Canaan Smith’s eight-game hit streak, good for the longest on the team so far this season. The game featured a combined seven errors, including four by the RiverDogs.
It was the second Food Lion Live and Local Tuesday of the season at Joe Riley Park, in association with 105.5 The Bridge, and there was something for everyone! Fans checked out everything local vendors had to offer in a miniature “Farmers’ Market” set up on the concourse and enjoyed live music to go along with it. Those with a local ID were able to buy Grandstand tickets for just $5 as well!