Woodbridge, VA-With former Washington Redskins Super Bowl Champion quarterback, Joe Theismann, in attendance at Pfitzner Stadium on Sunday afternoon for an appearance to benefit a Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic game used jersey auction, the Potomac Nationals (8-8, 4-6) evened their four-game set with the Frederick Keys (9-7, 4-3) on a two-RBI single off the bat of C Adrian Nieto in the bottom of the 8th inning to win the series finale 3-1.
Potomac LHP Robbie Ray, who did not receive a decision, was terrific on the mound and struck out a single outing career-high 10 batters. Ray surrendered one earned run on two hits and four walks.
Much like Ray, LHP Eduardo Rodriguez, was very solid, but did not factor into the decision. Rodriguez allowed just one earned run on four hits, while walking one and fanning six.
The P-Nats broke up a scoreless tie with a single run in the 4th inning as LF Billy Burns blooped a leadoff single into center field before CF Michael Taylor belted an RBI double into the left field corner.
Frederick tied the contest at 2-2 in the 7th inning when 3B Jason Esposito singled to left center field just over the head of SS Cutter Dykstra to chase Ray from the game before LHP Matt Grace (2-0, BS 1) came out of the bullpen and allowed a single yanked into right field off the stick of 2B Travis Adair to put runners on the corners. Then, 1B Connor Narron lofted an RBI sacrifice fly to left field to plate Esposito.
In the last of the 8th inning, against RHP Gene Escat (1-2), the losing pitcher, the Nationals loaded the bases and neither Dykstra, who popped up to shallow right field, nor DH Jason Martinson, who struck out, could push across the go-ahead run.
Then, Nieto muscled a two-RBI bloop shot into left center field to bring home both Ramsey, who walked, and Burns, who dragged a bunt single to give the Nationals a 3-1 lead they would not give up.
RHP Richie Mirowski (SV 1) earned the save in the 9th inning by inducing pinch-hitter Brenden Webb into a fielder's choice groundball that cut down Narron at second base.
The Nationals will embark on a seven-game road trip to Zebulon, NC to face the Carolina Mudcats and the Myrtle Beach Pelicans in Myrtle Beach, SC.
Game One against the Mudcats on Monday night is slated for 7:15pm at Five County Stadium.
The Potomac Nationals of the Carolina League play at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge, Virginia, and are the Class-A Advanced affiliate of the Washington Nationals. P-Nats 2013 season tickets and mini plans are on sale now. Sponsorship opportunities for the '13 season are now available. Plan your corporate outing now in preparation for the summer months as the P-Nats offer discounted group rates and all-inclusive picnic options. Visit the P-Nats online at www.potomacnationals.com or call the ticket office at 703-590-2311 for more!
-- Potomac Nationals --