RiverDogs Take Out Frustration on Woodpeckers in Lopsided Win

VIDEO: RiverDogs Can’t Hold Late Lead, Drop Third Straight in Extras
VIDEO: RiverDogs Can’t Hold Late Lead, Drop Third Straight in Extras
Published: Aug. 26, 2022 at 12:59 PM EDT
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Fayetteville, NC - One night after being held off the scoreboard, the Charleston RiverDogs snapped their offensive drought by scoring six runs in the fourth inning to run away from the Fayetteville Woodpeckers for a 12-3 victory. The teams combined to walk 21 batters and leave 28 runners on base in the Thursday night contest that was delayed 44 minutes by rain. Julio Meza went 4-5 with two doubles and a triple to lead the RiverDogs offense.

It was Fayetteville (17-34, 48-68) who did the early damage, racing out to a 3-0 lead in the third. Daiveyon Whittle took over on the mound in the third inning and promptly allowed a controversial triple to left field. The RiverDogs believed the ball bounced out of play and should have been a ground rule double. Whittle then hit Zach Cole with an 0-2 pitch to place runners on the corners. Cole stole second base and then both runners advanced on a wild pitch that made it 1-0. After a walk and another stolen base, Meza was charged with a passed ball behind the plate as a second run scored. Before the inning ended, Collin Price added an RBI single. Whittle departed after that inning having thrown 35 pitches.

The RiverDogs (32-19, 78-39) were held off the board for the first three innings, extending their scoreless streak to 13 innings. That changed quickly in the fourth when the first five batters collected hits against A.J. Blubaugh. Willy Vasquez and Blake Robertson opened the frame with singles and Brock Jones put the visitors on the board with an RBI double. Oneill Manzueta tied the game with a two-run single and Alejandro Pie gave them a 4-3 lead with a bouncer to third. Carson Williams and Vasquez added RBI singles before three outs were recorded as the lead swelled to 6-3. The RiverDogs collected a season-best eight hits in the frame.

The lead grew over the final five innings to reach the one-sided final tally. Meza tripled home a run in the fifth and scored moments later on a wild pitch. Junior Caminero was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded in the seventh and Vasquez followed with his third hit, a line drive double over the left fielder’s head that scored two more. Finally, Jones worked a bases loaded walk in the ninth to reach 12 runs.

Aside from Meza’s big day, the RiverDogs received three hits and three runs batted in from Vasquez. The infielder pushed his hitting streak to 11 games. Seven of the nine players in the lineup collected at least one hit.

Cole Wilcox worked the first 2.0 innings for the RiverDogs in his first appearance with the team in 2022. He collected four strikeouts including three with a man on third base in the first frame. Aneudy Cortorreal, Matthew Peguero and Kamron Fields combined to work 6.0 scoreless innings down the stretch despite walking five batters among them. They recorded nine strikeouts and allowed just four hits with Cortorreal securing the win.

The RiverDogs can secure a split of the series with a win on Friday night in game four of the set. RHP JJ Goss (3-5, 4.40) will take his turn in the rotation on the mound for Charleston. RHP Nic Swanson (3-2, 4.38) will counter for the Woodpeckers. First pitch is slated for 7:05 p.m.