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Mudcats Drop Series Opener 3-1

Jeferson Figueroa totaled seven strikeouts over six innings while taking the tough luck loss
Jeferson Figueroa - Carolina Mudcats (Neal Hock)
August 2, 2022

Kannapolis 3 @ Carolina 1 August 02, 2022 | Venue : Five County Stadium | First pitch : 6:59 PM | Att : 858 | T : 2:16 KAN: 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 3 10 2 CAR: 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

Kannapolis 3 @ Carolina 1
August 02, 2022 | Venue : Five County Stadium | First pitch : 6:59 PM | Att : 858 | T : 2:16

KAN: 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 3 10 2
CAR: 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 5 1

WP: Haylen Green (2 - 0) LP: Jeferson Figueroa (0 - 7) SV: Liam Jenkins (2)

ZEBULON – Jadher Areinamo and Luis Castillo combined for three hits in their Carolina League debuts and Jeferson Figueroa totaled seven strikeouts over six innings pitched while recording his first career quality start, but the Carolina Mudcats (14-47, 48-49) failed to overcome an early deficit while losing 3-1 in the opener of a six-game series with the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers (19-12, 45-52) on Tuesday night at Five County Stadium.

Figueroa (0-7) allowed two runs and three hits in the first, but went on to retire 10 straight from the end of the first through the fourth. He also escaped a bases loaded jam in the fifth with three straight strikeouts and tossed a scoreless sixth before leaving the game with the Mudcats down 2-0.

Carolina’s lone run of the game came in the last of the sixth after Areinamo walked and moved up on a single from Castillo. It was actually an error on Castillo’s hit to center by Logan Glass that allowed Areinamo to third and it would be an error by catcher Colby Smelley that allowed Areinamo to score from third moments later. That run-scoring error came on a throw to second that was intended to catch Castillo on a steal attempt. Castillo would eventually be thrown out a third on the same play, but Carolina had the deficit down to 2-1 going into the seventh.

Kannapolis would then score an insurance run in the eighth off reliever Miguel Guerrero while going up 3-1 late in the game. Guerrero pitched through two innings with one earned run allowed on four hits. He also walked two and struck out two while following Figueroa’s quality outing. Pablo Garabitos later worked the ninth and pitched around a hit while pitching a scoreless frame.

The 3-1 Kannapolis lead held through the eighth and ninth as relievers Jonah Scolaro and Liam Jenkins finished off the Mudcats. Scolaro originally entered the game in the fifth and turned in four innings with just one unearned run allowed on three hits. He also struck out five against just one walk. Jenkins (S, 2) followed Scolaro and pitched the ninth where he worked around a two-out walk and struck out one.

Reliever Haylen Green earned the victory for Cannon Ballers as he pitched through three scoreless in relief of rehabbing starter Jeremiah Burke. Green (2-0) totaled four strikeouts and allowed just one hit over his three-inning effort across the second, third and fourth.

Andy Atwood singed to start the game for the Cannon Ballers and later scored the first run on a bases loaded sac fly from Smelley. Samil Polanco then drove in the second run with a two-out single in the very next at bat. Polanco went 2-for-5 with a run, a double and a RBI in the game for the Cannon Ballers. The final Kannapolis run came in the eighth on a RBI single from Benyamin Bailey.

The loss dropped the Mudcats into a 0-1 deficit in the series and was Carolina’s sixth straight loss to the Cannon Ballers. The series will continue on Wednesday night with RHP Stiven Cruz starting for the Mudcats.

Areinamo, 2B (Carolina): 2-for-3, 1 R
Castillo, LF (Carolina): 1-for-4
Perez, RF (Carolina): 1-for-4
Ferrer, 3B (Carolina): 1-for-3
Laureano, RF (Kannapolis): 2-for-4, 2 2B
Polanco, 2B (Kannapolis): 2-for-5, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI
Smelley, C (Kannapolis): 1-for-4, 1 RBI
Glass, CF (Kannapolis): 2-for-4

Figueroa (L, 0-7) (Carolina): 6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO
Garabitos (Carolina): 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 SO
Burke, J (Kannapolis): 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO
Green (W, 2-0) (Kannapolis): 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 SO
Scolaro (H, 1) (Kannapolis): 4 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO
Jenkins (S, 2) (Kannapolis): 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO

Cannon Ballers 1st (Cannon Ballers 2, Mudcats 0) -- Andy Atwood singles to center field. Wes Kath pops out to Eduardo Garcia. DJ Gladney singles to center field, Andy Atwood to 2nd. Wild pitch by Jeferson Figueroa, Andy Atwood to 3rd; DJ Gladney to 2nd. Wilfred Veras walks. Colby Smelley out on a sacrifice fly to Luis Castillo, Andy Atwood scores; DJ Gladney to 3rd. Samil Polanco singles to left-center field, DJ Gladney scores; Wilfred Veras to 2nd. Logan Glass flies out to Eduarqui Fernandez.
(2 Runs, 3 Hits, 0 Errors, 2 LOB)

Mudcats 6th (Cannon Ballers 2, Mudcats 1) -- Oswal Leones struck out looking. Jadher Areinamo walks. Luis Castillo singles to right-center field, fielding error by Logan Glass. Luis Castillo steals 2nd base, Jadher Areinamo scores;Luis Castillo out at 3rd, Colby Smelley to Andy Atwood to Samil Polanco to Wes Kath. throwing error by Colby Smelley. Hedbert Perez grounds out, Samil Polanco to DJ Gladney.
(1 Runs, 1 Hits, 2 Errors, 0 LOB)

Cannon Ballers 8th (Cannon Ballers 3, Mudcats 1) -- Samil Polanco hits a ground rule double to right field. Logan Glass singles to deep shortstop, Samil Polanco to 3rd. Benyamin Bailey singles to right-center field, Samil Polanco scores; Logan Glass to 2nd. Johnabiell Laureano flies out to Eduarqui Fernandez, Logan Glass to 3rd. Andy Atwood flies out to Hedbert Perez. Wes Kath strikes out swinging.
(1 Runs, 3 Hits, 0 Errors, 2 LOB)