Dayton, OH - The Clinton LumberKings managed just seven singles in a 2-0 loss Tuesday night against the Dayton Dragons. The loss was the LumberKings' third straight while the Dragons picked up their sixth straight win in front of 8,179 fans at Fifth Third Field.
With two Baseball America Top 30 organizational prospects on tap to start, a pitcher's duel was expected.
That expectation held true.
Clinton right-hander Edwin Diaz and Dayton righty Sal Romano put up a combined 11 shutout innings. Diaz lasted five and allowed just three hits and two walks, matching his five shutout inning performance in his prior start against Lake County. Romano went six and scattered seven singles, one walk, while striking out four. He was the beneficiary of two inning-ending double plays, the first of which came in the second inning with the bases loaded. Both Diaz and Romano, however, had to settle for no-decisions.
Locked in a 0-0 tie, the game was up to the bullpens. Dayton's bullpen, which had allowed just five earned runs entering Tuesday's affair, proved to be the better pen. Between Alejandro Chacin (2-0) and Scott Brattvet (S, 2) only one LumberKing batter reached base. Jack Reinheimer walked to lead off the ninth, but never left first base as Austin Wilson, Tyler O'Neill, and Joe DeCarlo all went down on strikes.
Lars Huijer delivered a shutout sixth, but the Dragons managed two runs against right-hander Mark Bordonaro in the seventh. Sean Buckley led off with a double and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt. Bordonaro issued back-to-back walks to load the bases before Beau Amaral knocked a 0-2 pitch into centerfield for a 2-run single. The base knock was Amaral's sixth of the series in nine at-bats.
Of Clinton's six losses, five have come by two runs or less. They've lost two games by one run (4-3 and 6-5) and three by two runs (4-2, 6-4, and 2-0).
Diaz lowered his ERA to a sparkling 1.23 in three MWL starts. The right-hander is off to a strong start in 2014 after being named the 2013 Appy League Pitcher of the Year.
The LumberKings will look to end their three-game skid with lefty Eddie Campbell (1-0, 0.00) scheduled to make his third MWL start. Left-hander Ismael Guillon (1-0, 1.64) is Dayton's probable pitcher for the series finale. First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 PM CT from Fifth Third Field. The broadcast can be heard on WCCI 100.3 FM and WCCIRadio.com.