GREENVILLE, S.C. – After a dramatic come from behind victory the night before, the RiverDogs failed to muster up any offense in the second game of the series, falling 4-0 to the Greenville Drive on Friday evening at Fluor Field.
Designated hitter Mickey Gasper was the only Charleston (44-42, 7-9) hitter that saw the ball well from Greenville (39-47, 7-9) starter Chase Shugart (4-0), managing to reach base in all four trips in the loss. The New Hampshire product walked three times to tie a career-high after watching the RiverDogs come back from a four-run eighth inning deficit from the bench the night before.
Gasper’s infield single to lead off the second was one of only four hits managed off Drive pitching on the night. Shugart blanked the Dogs over 6 1/3 frames while striking out five. After back-to-back singles by Gasper and Max Burt in the second, the former Texas Longhorn went on to retire 14 of the next 16 before getting into trouble in the seventh. He put two on with walks and left with one away before Alex Demchak took over to get out of the jam.
Right-hander Roansy Contreras was nearly as impressive to start the night, allowing just two hits over the first five innings. The Drive broke the early pitchers’ duel with back-to-back knocks off the 19-year-old in the third, an unearned marker because of an errant flip to first by Contreras that allowed Everlouis Lozada to take an extra base on an infield hit. The Dominican arm’s confidence started to wane in the sixth, when with two outs he fell behind to the Red Sox first-rounder Triston Casas. The lefty slugger proceeded to drill the 3-1 offering out to right and into the Charleston bullpen for a solo homer that made it 2-0. Designated hitter Devlin Granberg followed with a second consecutive long ball to push the Drive’s lead out to 3-0. Contreras had allowed just four homers over his first 72-plus innings entering play before the back-to-back jacks.
Greenville added their final insurance tally off Jefry Valdez in the eighth. Shortstop Grant Williams doubled on the first pitch of the frame, later scoring on a wild pitch. The run marked Valdez’s first run allowed in four appearances.
The defeat marked Charleston’s fifth shutout loss of the season and the 10th time in 16 games to start the second-half that the club scored three or fewer runs since the All-Star break. The RiverDogs offense had entered play ranking just 10th in hitting (.231) and 11th in runs scored (62) since the mid-summer break.
With a 0-for-4 game in four trips to the plate, catcher Anthony Seigler’s 18-game on-base streak came to an end. Last year’s Yankee first round pick has been on base in 18 of his first 20 games with the RiverDogs. Welfrin Mateo’s 10-game hit streak was also snapped.