A big first inning, a very good pitching performance by Danny Salazar, and an outstanding job by the Columbus bullpen added up to a 4-2 Clippers victory over Charlotte at Knights Stadium.
The Clippers started the game with a bang offensively in the top of the first. Lonnie Chisenhall started the scoring with an RBI double to right. Then Chun Chen got in on the act with an RBI single. Juan Diaz capped the frame off with a two run single, giving Columbus an early 4-0 cushion.
The Knights would also crack the scoreboard early as Dewayne Wise scored from third on a Danny Salazar error in the bottom of the first. Another run would cross the plate for Charlotte in the bottom of the fourth on a Mike McDade solo homer.
Danny Salazar started on the mound for Columbus. The young Dominican right-hander was very sharp, striking out eight batters in five innings while limiting the Knights to two runs on four hits.
From there, the Clippers bullpen took care of business as Chris Jaukubauskas, Clay Rapada, and Preston Guilmet shut out the Knights for the final four innings of play. Salazar (W, 1-0) was awarded the victory. Zach Stewart (L, 3-9) was hit with the loss for the Knights. Guilmet (S, 16) tallied the save for Columbus.
The Clippers conclude their series with Charlotte, along with their long road trip, on Sunday afternoon. Japanese righty Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-2, 3.47) will get the start for Columbus. The Knights will go with right-hander Michael Nix (0-0, 0.00) who is making his first start of the season for Charlotte. First pitch is scheduled for 2:15 PM.