BUIES CREEK, N.C. - Cam Roegner worked through his third straight scoreless start and Max McDowell went 2-for-2 with two runs as the Mudcats defeated the Astros 6-3 at Jim Perry Stadium in Buies Creek on Saturday night.
Carolina (20-22) took a two games to none lead in the three game series with the victory and did so behind another stellar effort from Roegner (5-1, 0.76). Carolina's starter pitched through seven scoreless frames with just four hits allowed, one walk and two strikeouts. He reached 82 pitches, with 49 going for strikes and ran his scoreless innings streak to 22 and 2/3 innings with seven scoreless frames in Saturday's game. He also lowered his Carolina League leading earned run average to 0.76 on the season.
Brett Adcock started for the Astros and ended up with the loss despite allowing just two runs on four hits over six innings pitched. Adcock (3-1, 2.00) allowed two runs in the third, walked two and struck out three in the loss.
Carolina took a 2-0 lead on Adcock and Astros in the third and did so without recording a run scoring hit the inning. They managed to load the bases in the third and scored both runs after Adcock hit Keston Hiura with a pitch, before then walking Ronnie Gideon. Both free passes occurred with the bases full and in both instances brought in runs.
The 2-0 lead held through the seventh as Roegner kept the Astros quiet throughout his start. Carolina ended up scoring one more run for him in the third and did so after Hiura came across on a wild pitch lost by reliever Jesus Balaguer.
The Astros answered back with a run in the eighth against reliever Nattino Diplan while cutting the Carolina lead to 3-1. Diplan, however, eventually worked through the rest of the frame without any other damage and ended up pitching through two innings with one run allowed on two hits.
Leading 3-1 through eight, the Carolina offense went on to rally for three more runs in the ninth while getting a two-out, two-run double from Dallas Carroll. Carolina's third run of the frame scored moments later on an error by third-baseman Abraham Toro on a ground ball hit to him by Hiura. All three ninth inning runs were allowed by reliever Tanner Duncan who took over for Balaguer (2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 2 BB, 2 SO) for the final frame. Duncan ended up allowing two runs on three hits in the ninth in what was his Carolina League debut.
The Mudcats led 6-1 in the ninth, but the Astros rallied back with home runs from J.J. Matijevic and Chuckie Robinson while cutting Carolina's lead in half at 6-3. Reliever Alec Crawford allowed both solo home runs, but went on to finish the game while finishing out the Carolina victory. Crawford allowed two runs on three hits and struck out one in his appearance out of the Carolina bullpen.
The win was Carolina's second straight in the series and lifted the Mudcats into a series victory with one more game left to play. The Mudcats will go for their first sweep of the season when the play the Astros on Sunday at 2:00 p.m. at Jim Perry Stadium in Buies Creek. The game will air on the Mudcats Radio Network, The Big Dawg 98.5 FM and online at carolinamudcats.com via TuneIn Radio.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.