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Sand Gnats Drop Heartbreaker, 3-208/01/2009 10:53 PM ET
By Mike Passanisi / Savannah Sand Gnats
SAVANNAH, Ga. - The Sand Gnats ninth-inning rally fell one hit shy as Josh Satin grounded out to third with the bases loaded to give the Bowling Green Hot Rods a, 3-2, win over the Gnats in front of 2,664 at Grayson Stadium. Sand Gnats starter Chris Schwinden, who took a no decision, carried a no-hit bid before Mike Sheridan broke it up with two outs in the seventh inning.
Down by one entering the ninth, Jordan Abruzzo led off the inning with a double that shot into center field. After Imbewer Alvarez was inserted as a pinch runner, Jean Luc Blaquiere drew a walk from closer Josh Satow to put the go-ahead run on at first. Joey August laid down a textbook bunt to move the runners to second and third to bring up Raul Reyes.
Reyes drew an intentional walk to load the bases for 18-year-old Jefry Marte, who fouled out on a 1-0 pitch to the first baseman Sheridan. Satin worked a two-two count before hitting the hard-hit ball that Isaias Velasquez snared at third for the final out.
Schwinden retired 16 in a row after allowing a one-out walk to Velasquez in the second. Sheridan's single broke up the no-no and he would also score the Hot Rods' first run when he came around to score on a two-out single by Kyeong Kang.
The Visalia, Calif. native left with a, 2-1, lead and Jason Tweedy on a first in the eighth, working seven innings and allowing two runs on three hits with four strikeouts. Jake Goldberg (0-1) came in to relieve Schwinden in the eighth and proceeded to retire the first two men he faced. With two away, Tim Beckham delivered a double that scored Tweedy from first to tie it. Jake Jefferies singled behind Beckham to drive last year's first overall pick for the go-ahead run.
Sean Ratliff helped the Gnats offense with his solo home run in the fourth that made it 2-0 at the time. He finished 2-for-3 and has now hit safely in 17 straight games, which is the longest streak since Edgardo Baez hit in 17 straight during the Gnats 2006 campaign.
Savannah (18-17, 53-52) will look to rebound after its third straight loss when they get back at it at 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon versus the Hot Rods. All-Star Robert Carson (7-7, 2.89) will toe the slab looking for his eighth win of the season for the Gnats while RHP Joe Cruz (4-5, 3.50) throws for the Hot Rods.
It's a Kid's Sunday at Grayson Stadium presented by the Savannah Morning News, BIG 98.3 and The CW. Kids can run the bases and get player autographs after the game as well as eat free with the required coupon from the Sunday edition of the Savannah Morning News. For tickets and more information, visit www.sandgnats.com or call 912.351.9150.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.