RiverDogs Drop 5-2 Decision in Front of Largest Crowd of Season
Charleston, SC - A grand slam from Ethan Hearn powered the Myrtle Beach Pelicans to a 5-2 win over the Charleston RiverDogs on Saturday night in front of 5,920 fans, the largest crowd to see a game at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park this season. Diego Infante went 1-4 at the plate to extend his hitting streak to 15 games.
The RiverDogs (80-33) scored the first run of the game in the first inning off of starter Daniel Palencia. With one out, Infante singled to left and Beau Brundage followed by drawing a base on balls. The bases became loaded when Matt Dyer reached on an infield single. Alexander Ovalles put the home team on the board with a sacrifice fly to right field.
Myrtle Beach (56-57) took awhile to get started offensively, mustering just one hit through the first 4.0 innings of the contest. Fabian Pertuz changed the narrative with a solo home run to center field off of Antonio Jimenez. That swing tied the game 1-1.
The tie only lasted until the next inning. Jimenez struck out the first two hitters of the sixth, but ran into problems trying to get the third out. Felix Stevens and Casey Opitz singled and Peter Matt walked to load the bases. Jimenez jumped in front of Hearn in the count, but threw a two-strike breaking ball over the plate and Hearn smacked it over the right field wall to hand the Pelicans a 5-1 advantage.
Luis Rodriguez gave the RiverDogs all kinds of trouble after entering from the bullpen to record the final out of the fifth inning. He worked the game’s final 4.1 innings and allowed just three hits. The RiverDogs only offense against him came in the seventh on a Jelfry Marte sacrifice fly that trimmed the deficit to the final score of 5-2.
The RiverDogs outhit the Pelicans 7-5 in the contest. Dyer and Michael Berglund each finished with two hits and Dyer’s double was the only extra-base hit of the night for Charleston.
Juan Rivera started the game, tossing 2.0 scoreless innings before Jimenez took over on the hill. The southpaw took the loss, allowing five runs on three hits in 4.1 innings of work. Two of the three hits he allowed were home runs. Andrew Gross recorded two outs on a strikeout and a pick-off at first base in a short outing. The game was finished by Matthew Peguero who struck out three over 2.0 scoreless frames.
Playing on September 11 for the first time since the events of 2001, the RiverDogs hosted a massive tribute to first responders on the field in a pre-game ceremony. Senator Tim Scott was joined by several first responders who worked in New York during the attack in 2001 as well as local first responders. Following the game, the ballpark lights drowned the field in red, white and blue for the remainder of the evening.
The series will conclude with the final regular season home game for the RiverDogs on Sunday evening at 5:05 p.m. LHP Franklin Dacosta (3-0, 2.78) will receive the assignment on the mound for the RiverDogs with RHP Porter Hodge (0-0, 5.25) taking the hill for the Pelicans. The first 500 children 12 and under to enter the ballpark will receive an MLB mini-card set. After the game, kids will be invited to run the bases.