Woodbridge, VA-On Independence Day it was all about food, fireworks, and fun for the 7,912 spectators who flocked to Pfitzner Stadium to enjoy the July 4th festivities, and the Potomac Nationals (51-30, 9-3) made it a winning night as the hosting club bested the Wilmington Blue Rocks (40-43, 7-6) by the final score of 3-1 courtesy of a huge home run from C Adrian Nieto.
Wilmington RHP Kyle Zimmer (2-8), the crown jewel of the Kansas City Royals farm system, ended up as the losing pitcher after dealing 7.0 innings and allowing three earned runs on six hits with no walks and seven strikeouts. Zimmer's undoing was the three-run shot blasted by Nieto in the last of the 6th stanza.
A scoreless stalemate stretched through the first 5 1/2 innings before Nieto crushed a 1-1 pitch dealt by Zimmer over the Prince William Marina home run boat in right center field to put the Nationals up 3-0.
Potomac RHP Ivan Pineyro (1-0), the winning pitcher, in his second start of the season as a Potomac National, turned in a pristine outing. Pineyro fanned three in 7.0 scoreless innings, allowed three base hits, and walked just one en route to his first P-Nats victory.
Nationals RHP Colin Bates, in his second outing since being activated from the disabled list, gunned down three in a row in the 8th to get the ball to RHP Richie Mirowski (SV 5), who leads the Potomac staff now in wins (7) and saves after garnering his fifth.
Mirowski had a rocky 9th but got the job done after allowing a solo home run swatted out to left center field by SS Jack Lopez. Then back-to-back singles from CF Lane Adams and DH Dennis Raben brought the tying run to first base. Schlehuber struck out swinging on a 3-2 offering from Mirowski before 3B Daniel Mateo swept a 4-3 groundout to seal an Independence Day win for Potomac, their 51st of the 2013 season.
Friday evening will send Potomac RHP A.J. Cole (5-3, 4.10) to the mound to face off with Wilmington RHP Kyle Smith (4-4, 2.89).
Friday night will usher in a Superman jersey silent auction held on the Pfitzner Stadium concourse. With the release of the motion picture, Superman the P-Nats are auctioning off "Superman" style game used jerseys worn by Nationals players and coaches that will be autographed following the game. Gates open at 5:00pm.
The Potomac Nationals Baseball Network will begin streaming Thursday night with the P-Nats Baseball Lead-Off Show at 6:20pm in preparation for the live play-by-play at 6:35pm. Broadcast coverage of Potomac Nationals Baseball is accessible by heading to www.potomacnationals.com.
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 to see the future stars of the Washington Nationals at The Pfitz 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!
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