Muckdogs sweep Williamsport behind dominating pitching, timely hitting
Submitted photo and press release:
WILLIAMSPORT -- The Batavia Muckdogs ended a three-game losing streak with a doubleheader sweep of the Williamsport Crosscutters by identical scores of 6-3 on Wednesday night.
Despite a six-run first inning in game one and a huge clutch triple in game two, the story of the night was the dominating pitching performance of Easton Lucas. He reached his pitch limit in the fourth and did not get the decision, but Batavia Pitching Coach Chad Rhodes said he did his job.
"He did for us what we needed and plus some," Rhodes said. "He took the spirit out of them with his command and tied up some good hitters with his fastball inside."
Williamsport started the night with a six-game win streak.
"His fastball coupled with his command set the tone and made hitters have to cover the whole zone which allowed him to push and pull them with his changeup tonight," Rhodes said. "He was very crisp and in complete control."
Lucas struck out eight in 3.1 innings and walked one, gave up one hit and one run. Lucas is 1-1 on the season with 26 strikeouts in 21 innings allowing just four walks and six runs all year with a 0.86 WHIP and a 2.57 ERA.
Geremy Galindez improved to 4-0 on the mound as he threw the final two innings of the second game, striking out one, did not walk a batter and gave up three hits.
Brock Love tossed 1.2 scoreless innings, striking out three without giving up a hit. Love is a 2019 draft pick of the Marlins out of the University of Alabama.
The big hit was from shortstop Dalvy Rosario, who broke a 2-2 tie in the final inning with a triple to centerfield.
Rosario finished with two hits and run while Andrew Turner was 2-for-4 with a run to increase his average to .283 (Turner had a 2-RBI single which was later ruled a fielder's choice), Nic Ready had a RBI and scored while Jack Strunc had a RBI single and catcher Mikey Hernandez ripped a double.
Milton Smith II stole second and third, for 14 steals on the season while Rosario stole his 10th base of the season and Ready swiped his third steal.
In the first game, Batavia scored six runs in the top of the first to seal the 6-3 victory.
From there, four pitchers took over. Edgar Martinez went the first three, striking out three without allowing a walk, Josh Simpson picked up his first win of the season, going two innings and striking out two with no walks and one run, the first he has given up this season. His ERA is a minuscule 0.71. Simpson is a 6-foot-2 lefty out of Columbia and a 32nd round pick of the Marlins this year.
Joey Steele earned his third hold of the season, throwing one inning of shut out ball with two strikeouts, no walks and one hit.
Steele has a 0.00 ERA this season. The 6-foot-2 righty, a 30th round draft pick this year out of University of San Francisco has appeared in 12 games, thrown 11 innings with 18 strikeouts and one walk, not allowing a single run.
Evan Brabrand picked up his 11th save of the season, throwing the final inning, striking out one and not allowing a walk, run or hit. Brabrand, a ninth-round pick this year out of Liberty University (Lynchburg, Va.) has made the most of his 14 appearances, going 2-1 with 11 saves, a 2.03 ERA and has struck out 18 in 13.1 innings.
At the plate, Julian Infante, a 36th-round draft pick out of Vanderbilt University (Nashville, Tenn.) this season, went 3-for-4 with a RBI double, a run and increased his average to .304.
J.D. Orr is hitting a lead-leading .383 as he had a RBI single, scored a run, walked and stole his 22nd base of the season.
Brayan Hernandez (RBI), Dustin Skelton and Strunc (RBI, run) all had hits.
Batavia is at State College (Pa.) Thursday, Friday and Saturday and return to Dwyer Stadium for a 5:05 p.m. game on Sunday with Mahoning Valley.
Tickets are available at muckdogs.com or stop by the Dwyer Stadium Ticket office between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. during the week. The number is 585-483-3647.
Photo: Batavia pitcher Easton Lucas struck out the first six batters of game 2 to set the tone of Batavia’s 6-3 win. The Muckdogs are 31-21 with a four-game lead in first place.