CHARLESTON, SC - The Charleston RiverDogs used timely hitting, good defense, and their usual great pitching to sweep the Lexington Legends in a doubleheader on Thursday night at Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park in front of 3,119 fans. Ericson Leonora's solo homer gave Charleston a 1-0 win in game one, and they took game two 8-4 in a rain shortened game to complete the series sweep.
With the sweep, the RiverDogs advance to 27-26 in the second half and 66-55 overall. Lexington falls to 30-23 in the second half and 63-58 overall with the two losses.
In game one, both team's got fantastic outings from their starting pitchers in a blazing fast game that took just one hour and 33 minutes to complete.
Daniel Camarena threw five shutout innings, allowed just two hits, and earned the win to improve to 4-6 on the year for Charleston. Lexington's starter Daniel Stumpf was very good as well, but took the loss despite allowing only two hits and one run in six innings.
One of the two hits in the game for Charleston was a solo homer to left by Ericson Leonora, his 2nd of the year, which put the Dogs up 1-0 in the fourth inning. That one run was enough as Luis Niebla came in and got the final six outs to close it out and earn his first save as a RiverDog.
Game two was a different story with both team's offenses awakening from their respective slumbers.
Charleston struck first for three runs in the first inning on an RBI double by Dante Bichette, Jr. and a two out, two RBI single by Reymond Nunez. Nunez finished 1-2 with three RBI in the game.
Lexington came back and tied the game at 3-3 on Alex Hudak's first homer of the year, a solo shot in the third inning, and a two RBI triple by Bubba Starling in the fourth. Starling finished the game 2-3 with two triples, two RBI, and a run scored.
In the bottom of the fifth with a light rain coming down the RiverDogs retook the lead for good on five hits and a hit batter to go up 8-3. It was a lead they would not relinquish.
The Legends put up a run in the top of the sixth, but that was as close as they would get.
Luis Severino got the start for Charleston and gave up three runs on four hits without a walk. He also struck out a season high nine batters and earned the win to move to 1-1.
Christian Binford got the loss to fall to 0-1. He gave up nine hits, a season high eight runs, two walks, and fanned six. The rain started to pour in the bottom of the sixth, and eventually the game was called.
Greg Bird finished the game 1-1 with a double, two walks, and drove in a run for Charleston. Ty Afenir and Jake Cave each chipped in with two base hits as well for the RiverDogs.
BALLPARK FUN: In a show of thanks to everyone who sat through the rainy weather, anyone holding a ticket from Thursday's doubleheader may exchange them for a ticket to any remaining regular season home game this season!
COMING UP: The RiverDogs head to Rome, GA to take on the Rome Braves for four games starting Friday at State Mutual Stadium. Charleston will send out LHP Evan Ructkyj (9-8, 4.80 ERA) and Rome will counter with RHP Wes Parsons (5-6, 2.75 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7pm.
Box Score game 1: http://atmilb.com/128Yy04
Box Score game 2: http://atmilb.com/17tr1O4