RiverDogs Held to Three Hits, Suffer Another Close Loss in Kinston
Kinston, NC - For the third time in four days, the Charleston RiverDogs fell in a closely contested game with the Down East Wood Ducks at Grainger Stadium. On Friday night, it was a two-run double with two outs in the eighth inning from Thomas Saggese that broke a tie and pushed the Wood Ducks to a 4-2 win. With the victory, Down East moved one game ahead of Salem for the final playoff berth and secured a winning record against the RiverDogs this season.
Down East (71-47) took the lead in the second inning when Victor Munoz committed a balk with runners on the corners. The lead doubled in the fourth on Keyber Rodriguez’s two-out RBI single off of Antonio Jimenez.
The RiverDogs (81-37) were listless offensively over the first seven innings of the game, entering the eighth inning with just two hits under their belt. The squad received a spark when the bullpen combination of Theo McDowell and Eudrys Manon combined to walk the bases loaded with one out. Ben Toike took advantage by punching a two-run single into center field to tie the score 2-2.
However, in the bottom of the inning it was Down East that took advantage of free passes to move back in front for good. Nerlado Catalina struck out the first two batters he faced in the last of the eighth, but then walked Cristian Inoa and Cody Freeman over the span of nine pitches. With two on, Thomas Saggese lined a double to left field that put the Wood Ducks on top 4-2.
The RiverDogs had the tying run on base with no outs in the final inning courtesy of two bases on balls, but the next three hitters were retired in order to end the game. Troike was responsible for two of the team’s three hits in the contest.
Catalina took the loss after giving up two runs in his lone inning on the mound. Victor Munoz started and tossed 3.2 innings, allowing two runs on four hits. Jimenez worked 2.0 scoreless innings and collected three strikeouts, while Graeme Stinson turned in 1.1 innings without allowing a run.
The teams will meet in the penultimate game of the regular season on Saturday night at 6:00 p.m. The RiverDogs will aim to get back in the win column with LHP Luis Moncada (7-1, 3.02) on the mound. Down East looks to move one step closer to clinching a playoff berth with RHP Nick Krauth (5-8, 4.15) toeing the rubber.