AUGUSTA GA - The Augusta GreenJackets (17-11) defeated the Asheville Tourists (16-12) 11-9 at Lake Olmstead Stadium in a game that began with a 45-minute rain delay. Despite breaking out to an early 8-2 lead in the first inning, the GreenJackets were forced to overcome a one-run deficit in the seventh in order to claim victory on this rainy Saturday Night.
The GreenJackets sent 14 batters to the plate in the bottom of the first inning and broke out to an early lead thanks to a collection of bases-loaded walks and a timely, two-RBI single off the bat of Eric Sim. The Tourists would answer the ten-count in the top of the second, answering with five runs which included a two-out, two-RBI double from Derek Jones. The Tourists would go on to manufacture a run in the third to tie the game 8-8.
From there, the bats would cool off until the fifth inning when a David Dahl groundout plated the ninth and final run for the Tourists. The GreenJackets would recover from their scoring drought in the seventh when a Rayan Gonzalez wild pitch allowed Sim to score and tie the game at nine. Two batters later, Shayne Houck would come up big with an RBI single that would propel the GreenJackets to their 11-9 win.
It was a night for the bullpens to shine as both teams struggled from the mound early. Starting pitchers Joe Biagini (Aug.) and Ben Hughes (Ash.) had to battle the worst of the rain conditions of the night and ultimately had to be pulled in the first and second inning, respectively. Tourist reliever Ryan Arrowood struck out six in his scoreless 3.2 innings of work. Steven Okert (1-1) would go on to pick up his first win of the season, allowing no runs over 2.2 innings before Tyler Mizenko (8) recorded a six-out, no-hit save, striking out one.
Along with giving his team its late-inning lead, Houck went three-for-four on the night with a walk, two RBI and a run scored. Sim went three-for-five with two RBI, Matt Duffy went one-for-four with a double, and Andrew Cain had a two-for-four night with a double.
Despite the rainy conditions, the GreenJackets also celebrated Pink in the Park Night with the players wearing commemorative pink jerseys to help raise awareness for the fight against Breast Cancer. Fans in attendance had the opportunity to purchase their favorite player's game-used uniform at a Silent Auction held on the stadium concourse.
The GreenJackets and Tourists return to action on Sunday afternoon for the second game of their four-game set. First pitch is scheduled for 2:05pm.